Amherst, Nova Scotia

WestCumb  Amateur  Radio Club  VE1WRC

  Serving Westmorland County New Brunswick & Cumberland County Nova Scotia

Mike Johnson VE1MWJ - Cumberland REMO Coordinator - 902-667-3746

Cumberland REMO & WestCumb ARC Meeting Oct.18th, 2017

From Jim VE1JBL Oct.19th, 2017
Nineteeen members of the WestCumb ARC participated in the meeting with Cumberland Regional EMO Wednesday night Oct.18th, at the ED Fullerton building in Upper Nappan.
Emergency Management Coordinator Mike Johnson VE1MWJ hosted the event and went over plans with club members and gather information for operations between REMO and the WestCumb ARC.
Before the meeting began pictures were taken of all members to receive new County ID cards to be used when entering buildings around the county that have amateur radio stations installed.
The meeting included ways to contact amateurs when needed, priority of repeaters to use in an emergency and ways to cover the county by simplex.

  1. Springhill VE1SPR - 147.000-
  2. Sugarloaf VE1BHS - 145.350-
  3. Parrsboro VE1PAR - 145.470-
  4. Amherst VE1WRC - 147.285+

REMO is going to draft up an exercise for the near future dealing with an ice storm that has taken down all communications and the response by Cumberland REMO and the WestCumb ARC to establish communications at hospitals and fire halls across the county.
A new updated manual for members of the WestCumb ARC EMO group will be drafted up soon to include newly added Fire Departments, phone numbers of local fire halls, map with directions of amateur radio stations around the county, new repeaters, priority of repeaters and simplex etc.

Thanks to Ron Bickle VE1BIC for the photo.
From Jim VE1JBL Sept. 11th, 2017

Members of the WestCumb ARC along with Cumberland Regional EMO continue to crisscross the county installing amateur radio stations at volunteer fire halls. Today we made another road trip installing an amateur radio station at the Parrsboro Fire Department.
Arriving at the hall at 2pm we met up with Brad Ross VE1ZX from Two Islands who had already arrived ahead of us. We were met by James Shaw who gave us a tour and where they wanted the station set up. After selecting the location for the new antenna Mike VE1MWJ ran cable through the building while Brad VE1ZX soldered PL 259 connectors onto each end. Soon after we went outside to mount the antenna on the building. As this was being done Lorne VE1BXK arrived and used his analyzer to check the readings on the antenna and the line. We then connected the radio and power supply and made some tests by connecting to several repeaters around the area. The reading were well within range so the radio and power supply were disconnected and placed in a new
GO BOX for now and in the near future will be mounted in their new radio room.
While installing the new cable we found their old VHF fire radio system cable to be of no use so we will be heading back down with new cable and a new base station for their radio room.
We cleaned up our mess loaded all the tools and supplies back into the vehicle and left the building at 5pm.
Work has now been completed at fire halls in Pugwash, Tidnish, Oxford, Advocate and Parrsboro. We are already in discussions with other volunteer fire halls in the county for future radio stations.
Work was completed a couple of years ago with installing amateur radio stations at all 5 hospitals in Cumberland County and also installing an amateur radio repeater VE1SPH 146.805 for emergency communications on top of the All Saints Hospital in Springhill.
Thanks to Brad Ross VE1ZX for the photo.

From Jim VE1JBL Jan.29th, 2017

Mike Johnson VE1MWJ from Cumberland REMO and Jim Langille VE1JBL of the WestCumb ARC attended the Tidnish Fire Hall on Sunday Jan.15th to install an amateur radio station in their radio room. We started at 10am running two lines of coax through the attic to the new tower at the back of the building. The tower was attached to the building. Connectors were soldered on all four ends and the antenna was raised to the top of the tower. With the wind picking up and snow squalls coming in off the strait we decided to wait for another day to finish the project. The antennas for Tidnish Fire were tied with rope to the side of the tower instead of bringing them back down. We connected the cable and checked their VHF radios by making a contact with Valley Dispatch. They responded with a very good signal report so we finished up their radio in the radio room and it is now active. The amateur radio antenna and radio will be installed when we return at a later date. 

Thanks to Kenny Gilbert and his bucket truck Cumberland REMO Mike Johnson VE1MWJ along with WestCumb ARC member Jim Langille VE1JBL finished the installation of the Tidnish Fire antenna and amateur radio antenna on Sunday morning Jan.29th, 2017. Once completed contacts were made to Valley Dispatch on the fire radio and to WARC club member Brad Ross VE1ZX in Two Islands on the amateur radio station. After cleaning up we left the building at around 12 noon.

Work has now been completed in Pugwash, Oxford and Tidnish. We are hoping to get to Parrsboro sometime in February to install their amateur radio antenna and station.

From Jim VE1JBL Dec.22nd, 2017:

On Tuesday Dec.20th members of the WestCumb ARC and Cumberland EMC Mike Johnson VE1MWJ made a trip to Oxford to install a complete amateur radio station at the Oxford Fire Hall. We began work at 10am installed the antenna on the roof, feed the feedline from the radio room to the antenna, installed PL 259 connectors and opened up GoBox which includes radio, power supply and accessories. We made a few calls out on different repeaters across the band and SWR was perfect. By 1pm we left the building leaving the GoBox in the radio room for future use. Thanks to Mike Johnson VE1MWJ, Mike Masters VE1XDT for taking part in this project.

Three more fire halls will be completed come the new year including Tidnish, Amherst and Parrsboro.
Thanks to Mike Masters VE1XDT for the photo.

Cumberland Health Authority Emergency Backup VHF Amateur Radio Test

On Nov.15th, 2013 members of the WestCumb Amateur Radio Club in Amherst NS participated in a test of amateur radio stations located at all hospitals throughout Cumberland County.
With Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre in Amherst acting as Net Control, contacts were made with North Cumberland Memorial Hospital in Pugwash, South Cumberland Community Care Centre in Parrsboro, All Saints Hospital in Springhill and Bayview Memorial Health Care Centre in Advocate. Other contacts during the test included Cumberland Regional EOC, Red Cross Amherst, Sackville NB Memorial Hospital and Sussex NB Health Center. Besides a few minor problems with batteries and linking, all radios worked exceptionally well and there were 18 messages passed during the session which lasted thirty minutes. Repeater systems in all three Maritime Provinces (MAVCOM in Nova Scotia & PEI, International Repeater Group in New Brunswick) were linked together during the test. I would like to thank the following amateurs who participated in this exercise: Brad Ross VE1ZX Springhill, Lorne Anderson VE1BXK Parrsboro, Bob Tuttle VE1DR Pugwash Junction, Jim Hannon VE1AFH Cumberland EMO Coordinator stationed in Advocate, Bob Perry VE1EDP Amherst, Peter Hebb VE1SM Amherst and Jim Langille VE1JBL Amherst. Operators in New Brunswick included Rick Sullivan VE9RWS, Jerry Hannah VE1KW and Terry Craig VE9TER all of Sackville with Scott Hoyt VE9SDH in Sussex Corner. Overseeing NB operations was Al Thurber VE1RG of Keswick Ridge.
Message from Al Thurber in New Brunswick.
In partnership with Nova Scotia's Cumberland County hospitals and NS EMO there was an opportunity for New Brunswick to partner and test interoperability between the two provinces.
Since the Province of New Brunswick's EMO amateur radio system operates a system of twenty five VHF repeaters (International Repeater Group) the connectivity to Nova Scotia's MAVCOM network was put to the test. New Brunswick has all of their twenty emergency room hospitals equipped with amateur radio stations. All are equipped to access the IRG network.
In the past many months the IRG's system has undergone many changes to the network's configuration in forming many zones in the province. This exercise showed the capability of the New Brunswick system with the new configuration. It appears that some testing should be carried out to be aware of the capability of connecting to each province, whether connecting to NB from NS or conversely from NS to NB.
Overall the test went rather well with Sussex Health Center (VE9SHC) and the Sackville Memorial Hospital (VE9SMH) participating in the communications check.

If your hospital is interested in taking part in this test please contact Mike Johnson VE1MWJ Cumberland County REMO Coordinator.