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The Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES®) provides emergency communications to "Served Agencies" such as fire and police departments, the American Red Cross, the National Weather Service, hospitals, and others. Many ARES® teams also provide communications for public service events such as marathons, parades, bike riding events, and boat races. Individual ARES® teams are organized at the county level in Missouri. This is the Web site of the ARES® team serving St. Louis City and County, Missouri.

The Amateur Radio Emergency Service® is a program of the American Radio Relay League. "ARES" and "Amateur Radio Emergency Service" are registered marks of and are used on this Web site by permission of the American Radio Relay League.

Emergency Communicator's Notebook

It was a bad experience, or was it?

It was a bad experience, everyone was shouting at each other, and you're glad that it's over. Now what do you do? You could get on Facebook and bad-mouth everyone who upset you. Or you might try reviewing what happened as if you were a disinterested observer. How much of the conflict was due to misunderstanding or miscommunication? If you hadn't been so stressed, could you have helped alleviate some of the problems? If you can learn something from the experience, then it wasn't a loss at all.

More hints, tips, and other tidbits about emergency communications
compiled by St. Louis Metro ARES® Registered Volunteers

H.A.R.N. Operators
Use 147.360 (+) for the remainder of 2015

The Hospital Amateur Radio Network will hold its monthly tests on 147.360 (+) for the remainder of this year. Whether this is a temporary or permanent switch has not yet been determined.

ARES EMA Fire logos

St. Louis Metro ARES/RACES
* * * Simulated Emergency Test * * *

Saturday October 10, 2015
8:00 AM to noon

You can be part of the exercise!!

Come and learn!

Important: Note new main frequency below

St. Louis Metro ARES/RACES will be holding its annual Simulated Emergency Test on the morning of October 10th. This year we will be responding to and opreating from various fire protection districts around the county. ARES volunteers are urged to respond but all licensed amateur radio operators are welcome to participate. If you've never done anything like this before, great! Get a taste of what a real call-out would be like. Don't be shy, and don't worry that you won't know what to do, this is meant to be a learning experience.

If you have field gear (a portable mobile radio with antenna and power) then bring it. If not, grab your license and come anyway. This exercise will be held inside so you will not need outdoor gear.

What will happen? At 8:00 AM the ARES tone alert will sound (don't worry if you don't know what that means), email alerts will be sent, and an announcement will be made on the 146.850 (+) repeater. Listen for the announcement, check in when requested, and follow the net controller's instructions. He will tell you where to deploy, what frequency to use, and whom to contact. You'll be directed to a staging area (there will be several around the county) where you will meet the lead operator for the area and sign in. He will assess your equipment and capabilities and give you an appropriate assignment. Messages will be passed between fire stations, Central County Emergency 911, and the St. Louis County Emergency Operations Center. You'll learn about net procedures, message handling, tactical call signs, logging and more.

How do I prepare? Determine what 2m/70cm equipment you can muster. Have the following frequencies programmed in:
  • 146.850 (-) (141.3 Hz) - main repeater
  • 147.360 (+) - secondary repeater
  • 146.610 (-) - zone repeater
  • 146.730 (-) (141.3 Hz) - zone repeater
  • 147.060 (+) (141.3 Hz) - zone repeater
  • 147.510 - HVTac10 simplex
  • 146.415 - HVTac11 simplex
  • 147.435 - HVTac12 simplex
  • 146.535 - HVTac13 simplex
  • 147.585 - HVTac14 simplex
While not mandatory, it would be helpful to familiarize yourself with formal message handling before the exercise. There is a practice net each week on 146.850 at about 8:00 PM.

This should be fun, and you will learn a lot. While not absolutely necessary, please contact Steve Wooten at [email protected] if you plan to participate, just so that we have some idea how many people are going to show up.

Where will I go? That's a surprise. It will be determined when you check in with net control. We will, however, give you a hint. The three deployment locations are within:
  • The Florissant Valley Fire Protection District
  • The Maryland Heights Fire Protection District
  • The Mehlville Fire Protection District
We will also include the Monarch Fire Protection District if we can find a volunteer to be the lead operator. Contact Steve Wooten, [email protected] if you are interested.

We could use a few more volunteers to work
an exercise at Jefferson Barracks
on Friday October 16, 2015

Please contact Steve Wooten, [email protected] if you can help.

Net control operators really needed..

Are you ready to try something new? Would you like to add to your emergency communications skills? We greatly need more volunteers to act as net controllers.

Not sure that you're qualified? Microphone shy? Daunted by the prospect? We've all been there. It's not as difficult or scary at it seems, and there will be plenty of friendly help available.

You need not make a long term commitement. Although we'd love for you to become one of the "regulars", you can try net control just once, do it on a irregular basis (whenever you feel like it), or be on standby in case none of the regular net controllers are avalable.

More than one net needs additional controllers. There is the regular Wednesday 7:30 PM net, of course, but we also have the follow-up practice message net. If we get enough volunteers we would also like to start a Saturday morning net.

If you think you might be interested, or just have questions, please contact Gary Hoffman, KB0H, the net manager.

Weekly Practice Message Net

Radiogram logo

It is very important that amateur radio operators working emergency situations understand how to handle written messages. There are standard protocols and message forms. All of the details about handling these written messages, sometimes called "formal traffic", can be found on our Resources page or via the link below. We urge you to examine this material, then try copying messages read during our weekly practice message net.

Net Controllers needed!

The weekly practice message net has only one net control operator. If you'd like the opportunity to learn more and actually send messages, even just one time, please contact Gary Hoffman, KB0H.

Thank you.

ARES icon Interested in joining ARES®? ARES icon

Please fill out an application and mail it to the Emergency Coordinator (see contacts page). The forms do not get sent to us electronically. You will need to print out the physical form, fill it in, and mail it to us.

ARES® application in Adobe Acrobat "PDF" format1

1 - Please see the Software section of the Resources page if you do not have software necessary to read these files.
Or, if you prefer, write or email us and request a physical application form.

What will we do in the event of a disaster?

ARES logo

Click here to learn about Emergency Support Functions and the role of St. Louis Metro ARES/RACES in emergency management plans.
Check In

Field Station

St. Louis Metro ARES® holds a 2 meter net every week (see date and time listed below). All amateur radio operators are welcome to participate.
Net Control


Run the show! We will teach you what you need to know. We'll give you the opportunity to control a net and help you if you have difficulties. See out Voice Net Operations page.
Emergency Communications Information

ARES table at hamfest

Not sure where to begin? Contact us and we will help you get started.


If you haven't been to our monthly meetings you've missed talks and demonstrations on Go-Bags, Message Handling, the Missouri Emergency Packet Network, DC Power and much more.
Help Is Available

coax bag

Do you need help building a go-bag? Are you unsure about what to use for emergency power? Would you like some information about personal preparedness? We can help.
Share Your Expertise

Powerpole install

Do you have emergency communications experience or knowledge that you'd like to share with others? Do you have some other skill or talent that could benefit the group? We'd be happy to hear from you.
Yes, We QSL

QSL card

Do you monitor St. Louis Metro ARES® activities? Write to us and we'll send you a QSL card. Click here for more information.
Next Meeting

Map to BJWCH

The date and location of our next monthly meeting can be found on the Calendar of Events page, along with directions how to get there.
Field Exercises

KC0QMU at R.E.T.

Join us in our field exercises and develop your skills. Find out what things you do well and which areas you could improve. Help us to create a robust response team.
Yahoo Group

Click here to join STLARES
Click to join STLARES

Licensed amateur radio operators are invited to join the St. Louis Metro ARES® Yahoo group.

microwave dishes

Yes, we accept donations of stamps, cash, items to sell or raffle, items that we can distribute to our volunteers, and so forth.

St. Louis Metro ARES® regular nets

1 - Please see the "Software" section on the Resources page if you do not have software necessary to read these files.

© 2015 St. Louis Metro ARES®