Relocation Drill held June 25 at new facility to check frequencies, drill on procedures

Washington County ARES members participated in the Relocation Drill held at a new location to drill on procedures and to check frequencies. The new location is Park High School in Cottage Grove. The frequencies were checked for reliability and signal strength in the concrete and steel building. Conclusions regarding ham radio include (1) both VHF and UHF worked well in the building, (2) intra-building comms with just handhelds were weak and unreliable, (2) inside to outside the building with just handhelds were weak and unreliable, (3) the use of a portable radio outside the building with 25 - 50 watts was strong and reliable with all interior stations, and (4) digital communications in-to and out-of the building were reliable. The drill was well run and went smoothly. Additional checking will be done in the future to improve reliability.