During localized emergencies and widespread disasters, the importance of the Aiken County communications systems becomes obvious. These communications systems include landline and wireless telephone (cellular) networks, broadcast and cable television, High Frequency (HF), Very High Frequency (VHF), Ultra High Frequency (UHF), and 800 MHz trunked radio systems, satellite systems, and internet based systems. Although our communications systems are dependable and are utilized on a daily basis during routine and emergency communications, disaster conditions often impact their performance. Therefore, Aiken County has built in redundant interoperable communications to face these challenges.
The Aiken County Emergency Management Division recognizes the importance of Amateur Radio as a redundant form of communications in the event of isolated or catastrophic communications failures. Amateur Radio Operators utilize HF, VHF, and UHF frequencies in order to provide communications interoperability between emergency responders, the Emergency Operations Center, emergency shelters, hospitals and other agencies such as the Salvation Army and Red Cross.
The Aiken County Emergency Management Division’s Amateur Radio Emergency Communications trailer is capable of interoperable communications with FCC licensed Amateur Radio Operators, first responder agencies (Fire, EMS, Law Enforcement, Emergency Management, and the EOC) as well as state and federal agencies.