Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet Counties Public Service Communications Organization
CCECPSCO - Public Service, RACES
The Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet Counties Public Service Communications Organization is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public service organization located in Northern Michigan and formed to train Amateur Radio volunteers to be capable of providing assistance to area professional emergency communications services, increasing the Charlevoix, Cheboygan, and Emmet Counties emergency response effectiveness, and speeding the recovery effort in the event of a communications emergency. The CCECPSCO maintains communications facilities at the emergency centers in Charlevoix, Cheboygan, and Emmet Counties, participates in emergency drills and activations, and is the "go-to" organization for RACES activites in those counties. Licensed Hams are encouraged to join, learn, and participate to advance their skills and provide a benefit back to the community.
RACES is the "Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service". The CCECPSCO is proud to be chosen by our three-county government Emergency Manager as the organization providing trained Ham Radio operators for RACES operations in his counties. RACES is activated by a state, county, or local government to provide communications in time of a civil emergency. To participate in RACES, an Amateur Radio operator must have the training and certification as required by the government body doing the activation. The CCECPSCO was formed for the purpose of organizing and training such participants and to provide other types of communications support to our three counties, our communities, and the surrounding areas in Northern Michigan.
Otsego County EOC Work Party
Brand new Ham Radio operator Marty Scott KD8VOV assisted a work party installing new antennas at the Otsego County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in Gaylord Saturday, September 28th. Here Marty, who passed his Technician test only a couple weeks ago, is mounting a balun and load 22 feet up the center pole of a new 200' long folded dipole. This antenna is being built for reliable state-wide communications using NVIS (Near Vertical Incident Skywave) communications on 160 through 40 Meters. The antenna will also support longer-range communications on 20 through 10 Meters.
Attending the work party Saturday were a number of Hams from the Otsego County area along with others from across Northern Michigan. Also installed were two VHF/UHF dual-band antennas on the new 50' tower located just outside the Emergency Operations Center located in the University Center at Gaylord building seen in the background of this picture. Mike WB8TQZ led the work crew at the tower and did the climbing while a separate work crew installed the folded dipole on three telephone poles that had been placed earlier.
The CCECPSCO along with Hams from other areas of Northern Michigan have been working with Otsego County Hams to bootstrap their RACES related emergency communications organization and operations at the Otsego County EOC.
CCECPSCO News Items
Status - 11/25/13
* The N8DNX 442.375, CCECPSCO W8CCE 443.375 DSTAR and SAARC W8GQN 146.680 repeaters and IRLP node are currently working fine.
* The KD8QCC 444.0375 D-STAR repeater in Gaylord is working fine and is now connected to a functioning gateway system. The system is currently running with one antenna array at somewhere around 300' up the tower and a duplexer. The longer-term plans are to add a second antenna and receive preamplifier to that repeater and run it without a duplexer. This is how the N8DNX and W8CCE repeaters at Stutsmanville are configured and that upgrade will considerably expand our range from Gaylord. As it is, we know the repeater will cover at least 40 miles to the South and we expect it will go considerably farther when the system is fully implemented.
Both the KD8QCC repeater in Gaylord and the W8CCE repeater in Stutsmanville are normally connected to Reflector 24C and connect automatically to Reflector 24A for certain nets.
* The VHF and UHF W8AGB repeaters normally operating on the Icebreaker Mackinaw Museum Ship are currently off-line for the Winter. Plans are underway to locate them at a site nearby where they would be able to run all year.
* Last summer the Sunair 1 KW solid-state amplifier and 1 KW antenna coupler for one of the ship's verticals were installed on the Icebreaker Mackinaw and both now fully functional. A larger folded dipole is planned to replace the current 160, 75, 40 Meter antenna on the Port side next summer.
* Plans are in the works to sort out continuing problems with using the remote control panels attached to the two Sunair RT-9000 HF radios on the ship once the ship opens for the season.
* The CCECPSCO has been working with Otsego County Emergency Management to help in the creation of a new group similar to the CCECPSCO to cover Otsego and possibly some surrounding counties. Much work was performed this past summer getting the EOC at University Center up and running with a new 200' folded dipole for NVIS and a couple more dual-band verticals. The final connections for those antennas should be made shortly.