Yarmouth EOC L-R: Dave Vail VE1GM NCO for HF & Bernie Bonnar VE1UT on TMR
Exercise Handshake is a radio exercise in Atlantic Canada which is held on the last Tuesday of each month beginning at 7pm AT.
The exercise began in December 2008 as an radio net for TMR (Trunked Mobile Radio) system, agencies and operators around the province of Nova Scotia. The net was established and hosted by the WestCumb ARC in Amherst due to talks between Jim Hannon VE1AFH Cumberland REMO and Public Safety and Field Communications (PSFC).
The idea of the net was to encourage first responders to learn how to use these radios under normal conditions and also to report any problems (dead batteries etc.) to Net Control so they could let PSFC be aware of these problems. This way in a real emergency or disaster, the radios would be in working order and operators would be available to use them.
The net grew to include testing of all modes of communications including Satellite phones and amateur radio. Amateur radio operators associated with local EMO (Emergency Measures Organization) were asked to learn the operation of TMR radios in case they were needed as radio operators in Emergency situations.
The exercise is also a great time to test backup power (batteries, generators etc.) for radios and EOC (Emergency Operations Centers) around Atlantic Canada.
Amateur radio operators associated with EMO, ARES, CANWARN & Red Cross are invited and encouraged to take part in this exercise.
"It is better to practice learning how to use these radios and run backup power in a monthly exercise than to have then sitting on a desk and expecting them to work in a power outage, real emergency and/or disaster"
With the new TMR2, all agencies throughout the Maritimes can now join in on the exercise and are encouraged to do so. The exercise is a great learning tool for TMR2.
Checking in on Handshake using TMR
- Operators taking part are asked to contact Shubie radio (dispatch Shubenacadie NS) to find the Mutual aid channel for Handshake.
- Once Shubie gives you that information find that channel on your radio. Learn the channels.
- When Net Control ask for agencies to check in respond with your agency name only. Once they have all the agencies marked down they will then call you in by order of received.
- Give your name and agency you are with and any other information you want. If you have other members with you who would like to check-in inform Net Control at this time.
- Inform Net Control if you have any problems with your radios. This will be forwarded to Public Safety and Field Communications.
- When everyone from your location has checked in you can inform Net Control you are leaving the exercise.
- Once Net Control acknowledge you are leaving, return to your home channel.
Checking in on Handshake using Amateur Radio.
- Find Exercise Handshake on the MAVCOM repeater system across Nova Scotia & Prince Edward Island and IRLP Reflector 9014.
- HF operations on 3.675Mhz.
- Call in when Net Control is looking for check-ins using your callsign only.
- When Net Control calls you in, give your name, QTH, all modes of communications at your location, number of operators taking part, repeater you are using, if you have emergency backup power and if you are or are not using it.
- Once you have finished checking in you may ask Net Control to leave the net or monitor
NOTICE: Net Controllers for Exercise Handshake please send recap reports of the net to be included in the Atlantic News. Send reports to firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is the link to the ICS form used for logging the exercise. CLICK HERE
Any questions or problems please contact me Jim Langille at email@example.com
I will attempt to answer your questions ASAP or put you in touch with someone who can.
Thanks for supporting the Exercise.