Thursday, January 2, 2014


Sares to have role in disaster relief

by Lim How Pim, Posted on January 3, 2014, Friday
Lee (front row, centre) and Zainuddin (second right) test electronic receivers during the meeting.
KUCHING: Sarawak Amateur Radio Emergency Services (Sares), a volunteer-based group, is working with the Civil Defence Department to complement the government’s efforts in disaster relief.
It is ready to assist the State Disaster Relief Committee in eventualities such as flood, landside and fire which cut off telecommunication service.
Sares operates on the government integrated radio network (GERN), a system for official agencies to communicate with one another in times of emergencies and disasters.
Its president Capt Zainuddin Tan Sri Hamdan said their service come in handy when communication towers and other elements in the communication infrastructure were damaged.
“Amateur Radio is a worldwide organisation that we have just started here. We are presently working with the Civil Defence Department in disaster-prone areas,” he said after a meeting with Communication Assistant Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin at the latter’s office at Bangunan Baitul Makmur (or Masja) in Petra Jaya here yesterday.
Sares is prepared to reach out to disaster victims though it has yet to render aid to flash flood victims in the state.
Amateur Radio is a worldwide organisation but Sares – with about 50 volunteers – started its activity only of late.
In a short address, Lee said he would support the new group as an supplementary wing to the state’s disaster relief committee chaired by Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang.
“They are the experts in amateur radio communication and in times of emergency, this is important especially in remote areas where mobile services might be out of range.
“Flood in the city area will require amateur radio communication in the event cables are destroyed.”
Lee hoped Sares would meet the committee soon to find its role in addressing disasters.

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