Gaston County – Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES)/
Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES)
The Gaston County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES)/ Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES)meets at 7:00 PM, on the second Thursday of each month at the Gaston County Emergency Operations Center, located at 615 N. Highland Street, Gastonia, North Carolina.
Gaston County ARES/RACES holds four (4) regular nets each week (as ARES nets). One net is held on the on the 147.120 (100 Hz tone) N4GAS repeater (Echolink callsign: KG4ZJF-R) in conjunction with the Gaston County Amateur Radio Society (GCARS) on Tuesday nights at 8:30 p.m. (EDT/EST) There is also a net held on Tuesday nights at 8:00 pm (EDT/EST) on the 444.550 N4GAS repeater. Wednesday night has the third net, the Gastonia Area Amateur Radio Club/Amateur Radio Operator net on the 146.805 MHz (100 Hz tone) repeater at 9 p.m. The fourth net, the ARES Practice Emergency Net, is held every Thursday of the week at 7:00 pm, beginning on the 147.120 MHz N4GAS repeater, and then transitioning to a simplex net on the frequency of 146.535 MHz. All are welcome to participate in every net.
The Gaston County ARES/RACES is made up of amateur radio operators from around Gaston County who volunteer their time for communications duty in service to the public when emergencies arise, providing vital communications when no others are available. The Gaston County ARES/RACES works closely with Gaston County Emergency Management and with several other agencies, (Red Cross, National Weather Service, FEMA, and local government officials) to assure the safety and welfare of the citizens of Gaston County should an emergency occur. Most Gaston County ARES members are FEMA certified for state deployment and are in the NC AUXCOMM database.
The Gaston County ARES was officially organized in February 2001, with members devoting their time and resources in establishing an organization that would help with local, state and national emergency communications plans. On November 23, 2016, Gaston County ARES also took on the role -officially- as Gaston County’s Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) upon execution of a Memorandum of Agreement with the Gaston County Emergency Management Department as permitted by the F.C.C. under 47 CFR Parts 97.3 and 97.407; N.C. Gen. Stat Sec. 166A-19.5(b); and Gaston County Code of Ordinances Chapter 5, Secs. 5-3(c) and 5-5(5).
Gaston County ARES/RACES is a separate and distinct organization from GCARS or other supporting groups, although it shares physical and virtual assets with them. It is a 501(c)(3) non-profit group unto itself, chartered and directed by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL). However, you do not need to be a member of the ARRL or GCARS to join ARES. You simply need to be a licensed amateur radio operator in good standing with the F.C.C. RACES members must meet more stringent requirements and must be approved by the Gaston County Emergency Manager.
If you are interested in joining the Gaston County ARES, please contact the Emergency Coordinator, Bill Stevenson, AJ4JZ, by emailing Bill at (remove the * and % characters- sorry making sure your not a bot):
Thanks & 73, KM4LWL Chantel