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23 October 2011

Hamnet Weekly Report 23/10/2011

On Thursday this week Hamnet attended the South African Search & Rescue Sub Committee meeting. The meeting was very well attended by role players from the various volunteer groups as well as other Government officials. The meeting was also attended by Chris Gryffenberg, ZS6COG, Provincial Director for Gauteng South as well as Glynn Chamberlain, ZS6GLN, both representing the Gauteng South Division.

Under discussion were reports from attending delegates on activities within their areas of jurisdiction and from the volunteer groups, a resume of activities and exercises during the past 12 months!

Also discussed was a 2 day course in “Basic Spotting”. This course is an excellent training opportunity for those living in or near a facility where the need arises to search for aircraft wreckage after an accident. There is a shortage of adequately trained people who can assist in this type of activity to assist in locating wreckage from a fixed wing aircraft. I will obtain more information on this course as it can fall within the scope of a Hamnet operator!

Also up for discussion was the COP 17 Climate Control conference that will take place in Durban from the 28th of November to the 10th of December this year. This is a major event with over 20 000 delegates possibly attending.

Ground to air communications problems were also discussed and it is good to know that Hamnet Western Cape are in the process of doing some training in this field as training and experience in this area of communications could become a useful tool in the future. Chris Gryffenberg also indicated that Gauteng South is available to train suitable people interested in amateur radio for future reference!

We were also given good warning of the next Waterkloof Air Force air Display for next September. We – all the volunteer groups – have been invited to erect stands open to the general public and an opportunity exists to display not only our hobby but also how we assist during and after emergency situations!

It is a 5 day event. The first 3 days are known as trade days and the base is open to the general public on Saturday and Sunday which also includes the air display. Hamnet will ensure that we will be in attendance next year with a display including our communications trailer and other communications facilities for emergency communication!

The problem of unregistered Personal Location Beacons (PLB’s) and other unregistered beacons (like EPIRB’S and ELT’s) are becoming a headache for not only the SAPS but also for the MRCC. A call will go out to ensure that al beacons are registered on a Database for quick reference should one be activated!

A Debrief on the Tzaneen “Albatros” accident still needs to be conducted and we hope to be invited to attend for information purposes!

Reporting for Hamnet – this is Francois Botha – ZS6BUU