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BCEPN Simplex Operations Policy

From BCEPN Net Manager Mike Davis, K2MOL:

September 17, 2014

There have been suggestions in recent weeks that the Broward County Emergency Preparedness Net (BCEPN) make the switch from full repeater operations to full simplex operations, especially in light of the partial reliability of local repeaters. While I strongly endorse the use of simplex operations on this net to simulate communication in the event of the loss of local repeaters in an emergency, I would suggest that we take a more strategic approach to achieve the best of both worlds.

There are several phases that are necessary to utilize simplex operations on this net. Three come to mind:

Phase 1
: The Familiarization and Training Phase. This initial phase is necessary to inform and train local amateur radio operators of the ad-vantages and disadvantages of simplex operations, the necessary equipment and power for simplex operations, simplex versus repeater operations, repeater to simplex transition and combined repeater and simplex nets.

Phase 2: The Repeater/Simplex Net Phase
: In this phase the net would begin on a repeater for the first portion of the net and then switch to a simplex frequency for the second portion before returning to repeater operations for the conclusion of the net. This phase would achieve two important goals: 1. The inclusion of low power operators on the repeater for at least one or two portions of the net and 2. The reduction of the loss of low power operators that will inevitably occur once the net switches from repeater to simplex operations.

Phase 3: The Simplex Operations Phase
: After full simplex familiarization and training on this net over a period of time, there will be regular practice repeater/simplex nets to simulate the emergency loss of local repeaters. It shall be the continued policy of the Broward County Emergency Preparedness Net to utilize local repeaters, so long as they are available and operable, to allow for the full inclusion of all licensed amateur radio operators.

Michael Davis, K2MOL
BCEPN manager