The 2016 Florida Statewide Hurricane Exercise was supported by the state’s ARES and other groups’ activities, conducted on Wednesday May 18, with net operations on HF center frequencies of 3.950 MHz and 7.242 MHz, and on the SARnet linked system of UHF repeaters.
Propagation was challenging on both the 80-meter and 40-meter bands; many relays were needed. But, with patience and diligence, the exercise with coordination with the state EOC (SEOC) yielded experience, practice and honing of skill sets for participating operators. Test messages were sent to the state EOC station KA4EOC from all three Florida ARRL sections. Many were delivered via SARnet. The SEOC KA4EOC station was not co-located at the main EOC campus in Tallahassee, but instead was situated at a remote military complex Camp Blanding, operating from a communications unit, as a planned part of the hurricane exercise to test the state EOC’s Continuation of Operations Plan (COOP). The scenario had the Tallahassee SEOC facility so severely damaged that the COOP had to be initiated. – from an after action report by Northern Florida Section Emergency Coordinator Strait Hollis, KT4YA.