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Yolo ARES Meeting Minutes for 5/15/2012

Yolo County ARES meeting minutes

Called to order at 1905

Present members:
  Greg Kruckewitt
  Rick Littlefield
  Bill Gustavson  
  Bryce Birkman
  Gary Matteson
  Chris Leathers
  Ken Wilson

Agenda for the meeting was to cover the Cache Creek Ridge Ride event:

Goal was to discuss the things that went well at the event and to cover areas that need improvements. The meeting was very positive and up-beat. The general opinion was that Rick – N6KLB had developed an excellent plan and layout to provide radio coverage for the area and the activity required to cover it. Rick’s extensive knowledge and experience with this sort of activity was very apparent in the plan. Rick was un-able to attend the actual event which was additional proof of the quality of the plan in that he was not there to administer it. Every one there had the information needed to work their position from the radio stand point.

Rick read a letter from Jennifer – Ride Manager thanking the group for efforts and the coverage of the event. It was stated that this was the first ever coverage of the event and that it had demonstrated a level of security that they had not experienced in the past. They were very pleased with the results and asked the group to please mark the calendar for next May 11, 2013 to cover next years event. Jennifer did make the suggestion to shadow Chuck next year as he is in charge and moves about all over the course during the day. He is the person to answer questions in regards to the ride. Jennifer mentioned a donation to Yolo County ARES.

There were a number of suggestions made to make improvements for future participation in this event.

* Shadow Chuck
Place either a radio or shadow Dwayne who was delivering water and was in charge of the horse rescue trailers on site. He too was very busy and all over the ride course

* There were a couple areas that the radio coverage was difficult and suggestions were made to shift the position or equipment to improve it next year

* Vet Check 1 and 2 were the areas where radio reception was most difficult. The shadow with Jennifer experienced some difficulty with communication also during all their movements in the day

* It was suggested that the check point named “Relay” use a different tactical call sign to prevent confusion with someone requesting a relay for radio communication

* Maps showing ride check point locations along the course and ride routes for the different events are needed by the radio operators to improve position reports and to relay information for anyone needing assistance along the course.

* The use of gmrs or fsr radios at check points will greatly improve communications at these locations

* It was not requested at this event to transmit in and out times for riders but Rick suggested that this action would add another level of security and safety to the event and for the participants.

* It was suggested that each operator provide their own lunch/water needs and pop-up shade structures were also mentioned

* There was considerable mention of the Tick problem in the area so in future events operators may want to prepare for that.

* Rick suggested that only ride or site Captains should be requesting to shut down a location at the end of the event.

* Logs should be kept at each operator location
Doug Prado from the Bureau of Land Management spent a couple hours at Vet Check 3 and was very pleased with the radio plan as it was prepared and the radio activities. He listened carefully to the transmissions and made many positive comments. He was especially interested in the transmissions in regard to two riders that were logged in at the beginning of the event but not mentioned again until the radio group did a welfare check on their location. These riders were located shortly after, they had taken the wrong direction on the course and because of the time, they were re-directed by ride management to return to Cowboy Camp via the short cut trail. They were logged in at net control upon their arrival there.

Just prior to shut down of the radio coverage of the event there was a report of a rider less horse located. With the assistance of ride management and the radio coverage the rider was located shortly thereafter and returned to Cowboy camp safely. This person had dismounted to adjust a boot on the horse when it pulled away from the rider leaving her afoot.

During the event there were two rider less horse situations, one horse injury, two riders that went the wrong way on the course, one rider that was bucked off of their mount and had to return to Cowboy camp to be checked out for injury and several horses pulled for their safety by the onsite Veterinarians – all of which were covered by the radio coverage of the event.
Radio coverage of the event was shut down at Net Control at 1824 hours

Ride management was very pleased with the plan laid out by Rick N6KLB for the radio coverage. Management and participants all mentioned many times through out the day that they were very happy to have the radio coverage of the event and felt a new level of security from it.  

Ken – K6WLS stated that he would check into the possibility of setting up a Bank Account for Yolo County ARES.

** Note: This has been done and an account will be established on 5/17/2012 with Wells Fargo bank in Woodland. This account will consist of a checking and savings, with no associated fees. There will be two signers at this time on the account – Bill K6KN – Treasurer and Ken - K6WLS – AEC.

The meeting adjourned at approx 2040 hours

Yolo County ARES