"...The National Traffic System plan is a means for systematizing amateur traffic handling facilities by making a structure available for an integrated traffic facility designed to achieve the utmost in two principal objectives: rapid movement of traffic from origin to destination, and training amateur operators to handle written traffic and participate in directed nets. These two objectives, which sometimes conflict with each other, are the underlying foundations of the National Traffic System.

NTS operates daily, even continuously with the advent of the advanced digital links of today.

The personnel consists of operators who participate for one or two periods a week, and some who are active daily. The National Traffic System is an organized effort to handle traffic in accordance with a plan which is easily understood, is basically sound, and which employs modern methods of network traffic handling in general acceptance today..." —ARRL Public Service Communications Manual

TRAFFIC HANDLERS PICNIC 2016

TRAFFIC HANDLERS PICNIC 2016

Fifteen people attended the 2016 Traffic Handlers picnic in Concord this past Sunday.  The weather couldn't have been more perfect.  Good friends and good food was enjoyed by all.  We were honored to have our Section Manager Tom K1TW and our Vice Director Mike K1TWF in attendance.  An ARRL DIY book, contributed by the SM was awarded to our newest traffic handler Scott KO4W.  Discussion was also held concerning the reactivation of the Cape and Islands 2 Meter Net.  Bob N1SYC volunteered to take on that project.  More details to follow on that.  Many thanks to Bob.

Picnic attendees in the picture include from left to right:

Marcia KW1U, Jack N1OTC, Bob N1SYC, Mike K1TWF, Ralph N1LAH, Sam KC1ENA, Joe W1HAI, John K1UAF, Scott KO4W, Tom K1TW, Eric W1RVY (ex KB1WXC), Loren N1IQI and Greg KC1CIC.  Not pictured were the two youngest attendees, Audrey and Eli Wilhelm, harmonics of W1RVY.

We plan to have a repeat next year, so if you couldn't make it this year, we hope to see you next summer.

73, Marcia KW1U

*** TRAFFIC HANDLERS PICNIC SUNDAY AUGUST 7 ***

The annual traffic handlers' picnic will again be held on the first Sunday in August.  Join us Sunday August 7 at the QTH of KW1U in Concord MA between 12 noon and 4 PM.   Hamburgers and hot dogs will be provided. Bring your own beverages and anything else you would like to share.  I suggest also bring folding lawn chairs if you have them.  I have a few for those who don't.  I would appreciate hearing from you if you plan to attend so I can have an approximate idea of numbers.  All traffic handlers and anyone interested in traffic handling are invited.  It's a great opportunity to meet in person the folks you hear on the air each night.  The address is 44 Raymond Rd, off Plainfield Rd which is off Route 117 which runs between Routes I 95 and I 495.  We had a good group here last year.  Hope to see you this year.

73, Marcia KW1U

ATTENTION FIELD DAY PARTICIPANTS

While we have beautiful weather for Field Day this year, Murphy has been busy giving us more challenges.

The Quincy repeater is currently down (as of Saturday morning).  Therefore the Eastern Mass 2 Meter Net will be operating on the Sharon repeater 146.865 Mhz PL 103.5 at 8 PM Saturday evening for passing your FD NTS traffic.

For those operating VHF Pactor, N1XTB-4 is also down (as of Saturday morning).  KW1U-1 can be reached on 145.09 via BROCK and NTS traffic can be placed there directly.  It can also be accessed on HF Pactor on 3591.9 Khz center frequency.

Other net times and frequencies can be found on the left side of this web page.

73 and good luck with FD.

Marcia KW1U STM

PROGRAMS AND SERVICES COMMITTEE EXPRESSES APPRECIATION, SUPPORT OF NTS

Programs and Services Committee of the ARRL Board of Directors sent out this bulletin in appreciation and support of the National Traffic System.  I am very pleased to see the recognition of the efforts of all you traffic handlers who support the nets.  73, Marcia KW1U STM


SB SPCL @ ARL $ARLX007
ARLX007 ARRL Programs and Services Committee Expresses Appreciation,
Support of NTS

ZCZC AX07
QST de W1AW  
Special Bulletin 7  ARLX007
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  June 20, 2016
To all radio amateurs

SB SPCL ARL ARLX007
ARLX007 ARRL Programs and Services Committee Expresses Appreciation,
Support of NTS

The ARRL Programs and Services Committee (PSC) will submit a motion
to the ARRL Board of Directors expressing appreciation for the work
and volunteer membership of the National Traffic System (NTS). The
PSC motion, submitted by ARRL Southeastern Director Doug Rehman,
K4AC, during a recent PSC meeting, thanked NTS members,
congratulated them for outstanding service, and assured them of an
ongoing ARRL public service communication role.

"As Field Day approaches, the ARRL Board's Programs and Services
Committee wanted to recognize the continued work of the National
Traffic System, especially the dedicated rank-and-file participants
who are the lifeblood of this important ARRL program," said Roanoke
Division Director and PSC Chair Dr Jim Boehner, N2ZZ, who seconded
Rehman's motion. "The ARRL is committed to the NTS as a key
component in the League's public service communications plans."

The PSC will submit its motion of NTS support to the full ARRL Board
of Directors for consideration at the Board's July meeting.

The resolution points out that the handling of message traffic by
early radio amateurs led to the founding and naming of the ARRL in
1914. The National Traffic Plan published in 1949 gave rise to the
NTS.

The Committee cited the "countless hours" NTS participants devote
"to operate CW, phone, and digital nets spanning both the clock and
the continent," and the more than 200 NTS members recognized with
Public Service Honor Roll status in the most recent monthly listing.

"NTS plays a vital role in providing a messaging component for
Amateur Radio's public service mission, including preparation and
training for emergency communications," the resolution asserted. It
also noted that the PSC has been working to create the League's
Second Century public service communications delivery plan, and,
while reviewing the League's current operations over the past
several years, "the PSC has seen and has greatly appreciated the
valuable contributions of NTS members."

PRESS RELEASE - NTS SUPPORTS FEMA'S "CASCADIA RISING" EXERCISE

National Traffic System Supports FEMA’s Cascadia Rising

The ARRL’s National Traffic System debuted its new National Response Plan this past week during FEMA’s Cascadia Rising exercise.  At the invitation of FEMA’s Disaster Emergency Communications Directorate, more than forty NTS members in the U.S. and Canada demonstrated the ability to relay situational awareness from a simulated disaster area covering the States of Alaska, Idaho, Northern California, Oregon and Washington to their National Response Coordinating Center at Washington, D.C.

Methods used during this proof-of-concept demonstration project included the NTSD digital network as well as traditional radiotelephone and radiotelegraph networks.  All message traffic was transmitted and delivered over RF-only circuits using the universal radiogram format, selected for its proven network management tools and enhanced accountability standards.

The exercise proved the value of consistent, internationally adopted, standard procedures, practiced through regular traffic handling assignments.  Some observers compared NTS radiotelegraph nets to the best of military and commercial operations.  Transcontinental Corps ops displayed professionalism and skill operating CW under poor propagation conditions.  An initial review of TCC traffic shows near perfect accuracy (>99%) with the random, five character groups used for message texts.  Coast-to-coast traverse time averaged less than fifteen minutes.  One message was relayed in less than one minute.

Cascadia Rising will be the first of many exercises with FEMA designed to enhance the ability of NTS to provide efficient and reliable disaster communications services, especially vital situational awareness in the early moments of a communications failure.  NTS enjoys a culture of continual improvement and lessons learned from Cascadia Rising will be used to improve the National Response Plan and provide a basis of comparison for system performance.

Radio Amateurs interested in participating in NTS should check-in to a Section or local NTS net or contact their ARRL Section Traffic Manager.  http://www.arrl.org/sections.

Additional information about NTS and Cascadia Rising may be found at     https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/NTS-CR/info.

Contact:

Mr Joseph A Ames Jr, Chairman

ARRL NTS Eastern Area Staff

 

w3jy@arrl.org

NOTE: UPDATED EXPLANATION OF SAR AND PSHR

As there is often some confusion on how to get the numbers for Station Activity Reports (SAR) and Public Service Honor Roll (PSHR) reports, a more detailed explanation has been added to the SAR/PSHR Requirements article listed on the left column of this page.  Anyone who handles message traffic is encouraged to submit a Station Activity Report and will be listed on this page.  Those qualifying for Public Service Honor Roll with 70 points or more will also be listed.  Anyone active in public service, not only in traffic nets, is encouraged to submit a report and be listed.

QNI NEWSLETTER MAY 2016 EDITION

The May 2016 edition of QNI Newsletter is now available at http://qni-newsletter.net/.  There are many interesting articles including an update on the FEMA exercise "Cascadia Rising" which will take place in June 2016.  While there will likely be little if any traffic at the local level outside the states of WA, OR and ID, there will be activity on HF into the Eastern Area which will involve TCC (Transcontinental Corps) and NTSD (NTS Digital)  it is noteworthy that FEMA is interested in NTS involvement and this is an opportunity to show what NTS can do.

Marcia KW1U

MASS RHODE ISLAND PHONE NET REPORT

 

Summary report of the Massachusetts Rhode Island Phone Net

From October through December 2015 the net had:

  • Sessions: 38

  • Messages: 32

  • Total check-ins: 140

  • Different stations checking in: 22

Thank you for your participation and support, especially the support from section leadership and those hams who are personally unable to participate in the net.

73,

Ralph N1LAH, Net Manager

 

***TEMPORARY FREQUENCY CHANGE***

As noted below, until further notice the EM2MN is currently operating on the Quincy repeater, 146.67 Mhz PL 146.2 every evening at 8 PM except Tuesdays.  On Tuesdays it will operate on the Sharon repeater 146.865 Mhz PL 103.5.

EXCITING DEVELOPMENTS FOR NTS

For those who are not yet signed up for the NTS-OPS Yahoo group (and all traffic handlers are invited to do so) the following was received from the Eastern Area NTS Staff Chair W3JY.  It appears NTS is regaining its relevance and respect in the Amateur Radio world thanks to the great efforts of the three area staff chairs and others.  Let's show them how much we support their efforts by our particpation and diligence in net participation and handling of message traffic.  If anyone would like information on joining the above Yahoo group, contact Marcia kw1u@arrl.net or Joe w3jy@arrl.org.

 

 

"My apologies for the lateness of this update – it’s  been a very hectic few weeks in EPA, what with preparation for the arrival of a Pope Francis and Joaquin, not to mention the start of another Cub Scouting year in a family with two Cub Scouts!  We’re glad Joaquin stood us up!

Having said that, I want to relate the gist of recent developments regarding NTS and ARRL’s board of directors.  The call took place while I was on the road, and while I found a convenient parking spot I had no way to make a written record of the details.  Please forgive any errors of omission or degree and understand the important thing is this: essential concord is achieved.

Last week, I had a long but productive phone call with the ARRL’s Programs and Services Committee chairperson Brian Mileshosky N5ZGT, director from the Rocky Mt division.  Relatively new to his current job, he didn’t know very much about the history of NTS and its relationship with HQ over the last number of years.  I imagine some of the details communicated to him were unexpected but illuminating, especially how the loss of the Forward and Introduction to the Public Service Communications handbook left NTS without an official mission statement.

Brian reaffirmed NTS is a core program of the ARRL.  He made an emphatic point NTS is of direct interest to the Board of Directors by way of his committee.  He wanted to find a way to achieve reconciliation if possible.

To that end, NTS once again will be represented at the ARRL Board with a short but formal presentation to the P&SC at its semi-annual meetings in Newington.  We both acknowledged the tireless work done on NTS’ behalf by the irreplaceable Steve Ewald.  After talking a bit about the work NTS has done with our digital systems, the NCERT Concept, operator training, and European expansion,  Brian agreed ARRL leadership has been remiss in reaching out to NTS Area Staff at all levels.  He said he and his committee will make every effort to meet Staff leaders personally in the coming months.  (Given budget and finance realities, I should mention these meetings certainly would be by electronic means.)

FEMA’s interest in NTS also was discussed, and since NTS is not specifically mentioned in any documentation describing the ARRL-FEMA relationship except by inference, we both agreed to be sure to tip off and consult HQ staff as a professional courtesy, while retaining NTS’s traditional self-governance.  We hope the interest shown by FEMA’s Disaster Emergency Communications Division will grow into a model of citizen-cooperation.

These are very welcome developments, indeed.  NTS has always wanted to regain our place at the ARRL table and now we are there.

In the immediate future, we have much internal marketing to undertake, to tell our own colleagues about our professional management, the universal applicability of the proven radiogram format, how our “RF Only” digital system spans the U.S. and Europe and how FEMA prizes our not-so-old-fashioned phone and cw nets for their absolute reliability in a catastrophic “grid down” scenario.

President Dave Sumner invited NTS to submit an article to QST and work on that is underway as we speak.  Jim Wades and Kate Hutton’s excellent QNI newsletter has also been recognized as a valuable source of information on the NTS and traffic handling in general.

NTS has much to be proud about and now we have the opportunity to reintegrate ourselves into the larger ARRL community.  I personally look forward to the day when NTS activity is, as it once was, the sine qua non of membership in our American Radio Relay League.

If you have questions, please send them to me via return email at w3jy@arrl.org and I’ll do my best to answer them for you.

This note is authorized for distribution.

VY 73 DE W3JY

Joe"

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