The CCDES Director sends his thanks...

From: Atkins, Edward J.
Sent: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 10:20 PM
To: DES
Subject: Limerick Exercise

Folks,

We just wrapped up the Limerick Exercise. It went extremely well. My thanks to all who were directly involved tonight and to those who helped in the preparation or who were standing by ready to continue operations indefinitely if this had been a real event.

Very well done all around by all.

Thanks,

Ed

Limerick wind-down...

All,

What can I say?

The whole thing was sensational. CCAR members turned out, set up, and clicked through their duties showing outstanding capability, skill and adaptability. Our new technology has the power to make the challenging tasks doable and easier for us than ever before. Wow. Clearly the BEST ARES/RACES performance ever by CCAR.

Now it's time to look back and learn something from this experience. This is why we do it! I'll be wrapping-up the exercise with a comprehensive after-action report, but first I need ALL to send me few paragraphs before tomorrow. What went well? What did not? How would you do things differently to overcome a problem? Did you need anything you did not have? Information? Equipment? Training? Thanks to everyone who have already sent in their reports.

I'd like to ask everyone with borrowed county or personal equipment to drop it off (or pick up lent personal gear) at room 026 this Saturday morning, 9-10AM. We will use this as a clearing-house. PLEASE, try to make this time. It would cost me a week's personal time to accommodate everyone else's schedule!

Ed Atkins, Karl Mehn and the FEMA evaluators all had very positive things to say about CCAR and our performance. Ed did say we "saved their butts" in a few places, yet again. You were stars!

Congratulations all. Well done!

73,
Lor Kutchins W3QA
Emergency Coordinator
Chester County ARES/RACES

Limerick Update -- We're ready!

Monday, November 16, 2009

It was a long day today, but it was worth it. We solved the bandwidth and intermittent link problem at Bucktown. Tomorrow's exercises should proceed as planned using high-speed media, D-Star and HSMM.

Thanks to Karl Mehn for the approval and funding, Chris Bors of Land Mobile, Inc., for the tower climb and great work aiming antennas, Jim Harris, WA3NOA, for ad-hoc tests, and Andy Cooper, K3JSE, and Al Rabenau W3AHR for their teamwork, we got two link radios replaced on the 900 MHz data link to S. Coventry, and put up two new 5.8 GHz stations to form a high-bandwidth link. We had to go to 210' on the tower to find an adequate signal at that frequency. Wow, all in the nick of time. The weather gods shined on us.

Anyway, there are NO changes to the IAP from last Friday. Download the latest version and print it out if you have not already. It is attached to the last Limerick Update article. See you tomorrow on the radio or otherwise! Good luck in the exercise. And have fun.

73,
Lor W3QA
Emergency Coordinator
Chester County ARES/RACES

FEMA News Release

FEMA To Evaluate Commonwealth's Readiness

Emergency preparedness exercise scheduled for the Limerick Generating Station

Release Date: November 5, 2009
Release Number: R3-09-018

» 2009 Region III News Releases

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency will evaluate a Biennial Emergency Preparedness Exercise at the Limerick Generating Station in Montgomery County. The week-long exercise, which will begin on November 16, will test the ability of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to respond to an emergency at the nuclear facility.

Held every other year, these drills test government’s ability to protect public health and safety. FEMA will evaluate state and local emergency response capabilities within the 10-mile emergency-planning zone of the nuclear facility.

Within 90 days, FEMA will send its evaluation to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for use in licensing decisions. The final report will be available to the public about 120 days after the exercise.

FEMA will present preliminary findings of the exercise in a public briefing at 11:00 a.m. on November 20 at the Courtyard by Marriott, 150 Park Road, Reading, Pa. Scheduled speakers include representatives from FEMA, NRC, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Last Modified: Friday, 13-Nov-2009 11:46:53

Limerick Update

November 11, 2009

Less than a week until the full-scale exercise!

The Incident Action Plan (IAP) is attached to this posting (you will need to log in to see and download it). This is the formal NIMS documentation of the CCAR deployment. Please print and read all documents, particularly the ICS 204 (Assignment List) for your team/location. There have been some significant changes in the plan after last week's comm check.

This package also contains a blank ICS 213 and 214 (message and unit log) for your duplication and use on exercise day.

We will be discussing the IAP and operating guidelines at Saturday's Tech Rally. ALL DATA OPERATORS should attend, or get a personal briefing from me before the exercise!

See you at the GSC on Saturday at 8:30 AM, sharp!

73,
Lor Kutchins W3QA
Emergency Coordinator
Chester County ARES/RACES

Latest version IAP as of 11/13/2009

CCAR Weekly Net Check-ins for 11/05/2009

Mobile stations: none
Region 1: none
Region 2: kb3nck jim, a3qkz don, kb3mjd John.
Region 3: kb3cvc dick, w3jbs joe, kc2kpv eric, n3mxb guy
Region 4: kb3min paul
Region 5: none
Adj counties: w3bma dick,
oxford kb3ojl lanny, k3cim alex
Anywhere: k5hal cullen, kb3 rbu scott, kb3fcj tim, w3jbs joe, wm3l william, k3ith richard

Limerick Generating Station Exercise -- Dress Rehearsal

Our dry run and communications check for this major exercise will be held tomorrow morning, Friday, November 6th. This exercise will help us uncover items to fix before the full-scale exercise on November 17th.

Here are some details for all. For the most part, I think we are ready! Please note items that pertain to you if you are participating:

1) Our work in conjunction with the County is slated to begin at 9 AM with the opening of the Chester County EOC. However, you may need more time to set up prior to that. We will be operating on a compressed time scale.

2) A callout following our SOP-1 (please review it) will commence about 8:30 AM. All members will be alerted via RSAN and reverse 911 at the contact numbers and email addresses you have on file. Please acknowledge the message as it directs, whether you have signed up for the exercise or not.

3) Teams may pre-position near your pre-assigned operating sites, but not within sight of it. Do not move to your site until you have checked into RESNET and receive a formal assignment. Be aware that you may be needed somewhere other than your pre-assigned location due to actual turnout and the need to staff priority positions.

4) Emphasis and priority will be on the Federally-evaluated EOCs at Charlestown, E. Coventry, S. Coventry, Schuylkill, W. Pikeland, and W. Vincent. At the request of the Radiological Officer, we will make an effort to staff these locations first.

5) RESNET will open on FM 446.175 (Bucktown). This frequency will also be used as TACNET during this event. Additional frequencies may be added for the full-scale exercise on November 17th.

6) Tonight, data operators should fire up their email clients and download all messages they may have waiting on the email.w3eoc.net server and Winlink CMS. They may contain information you can use, and you should begin the exercise without having to spend precious minutes downloading messages that have little to do with the drill.

7) Data operators should also be sure they turn off their home email and Winlink clients if they poll the CCAR or Winlink servers. If you leave them on during your field work, you may find your messages will be picked up at home instead of where you need them. Don't make this mistake!

8) Data operators: Winlink will be used as backup. The primary ARES/RACES path for messages will be via the email.w3eoc.net server. Be prepared to obtain Winlink messages should something go wrong. If you require messages via Winlink, notify TACNET by voice or contact the RACES room by phone. Winlink messages will be sent AS NEEDED, NOT AUTOMATICALLY to avoid loading the network and stacking up on the servers with unretrieved messages.

9) Voice operators: Please follow our formal message handling and net operating guidelines. Please review SOP-5 and the CCAR EOP, 3rd edition.

10) Chester County EOC team: please arrive at the RACES room no later than 8:15AM and begin preparing the workstations for operation. I will be arriving late, but before 9 AM. NCS should be monitoring the 446.175 for RESNET checkins by 8:30 AM.

11) Downingtown East Relay team: Please arrive onsite by 6:30AM to set up. I will be there to help set up and get the link established. We want to leave there for our operating positions by 8:00 AM.

12) A revised Operator's Reference has been posted as an attachment to this article on the CCAR web site. Please retrieve it and use it tomorrow.

13) Good Luck!

73,
Lor W3QA
Emergency Coordinator
CCAR

Latest Limerick Planning Documents

The latest revisions are attached below. You must be logged in to view and download them.

The "Dress Rehearsal" is next Friday. Normal call-out procedures will be used.

73,
Lor W3QA

CCAR Weekly Net Check-ins for 10/29/2009

Checkins for the CCAR Information Net—10-29-09

Net Conrol Op: W3HOA

Checkins: K5HAL, Cullen, Liason to Southern Chester County; KB3FCJ, Tim; KB3MJD, John; W3QA, Lor; KE3HG, Rich; WB3GCK, Craig; N3MXB, Guy; KC2KPV, Eric; KB3PCY, Martin; W3XE, George; K3WIL,Will; KB3THX, Scott; KB3OLG, John; KB3MPX, Ryan; K3ITH, Dick; N3QGO, Brian; W3BMA, Dick; WA3NOA, Jim; KB3TQS, Tom; N3UD, Paul.

Total checkins via K5HAL: 2; K3WIL, KB3THX.

Total checkins: 21

Digital

Winlink:
KB3TQS, Tom
WA3NOA, Jim

APRS:
WA3NOA, Jim

Changes, Changes, Changes...

Recent work at Bucktown, Pocopson, and Nottingham have produced good results. PLEASE NOTE:

1) The outage of Nottingham UHF and VHF APRS digipeaters affecting the WX reporting system was fixed. 145.990 MHz and 440.950 are back on the air. Packets are being relayed with reliability now. If you switched your station to 144.390 as requested at Monday's Quarterly Meeting, you may now switch back to 144.990. Your WX station will report through the gateways more reliably on .99.

2) The Nottingham HSMM access points ('W3EOC Nottingham 1' on 5.8 GHz, and 'W3EOC Nottingham 2' on 2.4 GHz) are back on the air with internet connectivity available, and access to the W3EOC network email server.

3) Bucktown has TWO new D-Star repeaters. DV mode (digital voice with simultaneous low-speed data) is now available on 445.08125 MHz with a minus 5 MHz offset, and 1255.600 MHz with a positive 12 MHz offset. All D-Star repeater info is current on the web at www.w3eoc.org/dstarrepeaters. We plan to add a gateway there sometime after Limerick.

4) IMPORTANT FOR LIMERICK EXERCISE DATA OPERATORS: The Bucktown DD (high-speed digital data) repeater has changed frequencies from 1297.8 MHz to 1297.5 MHz. You must make changes to your ID-1 programming to successfully connect! This information will be published in the Limerick Exercise documents also.

5) An email server is operating on the W3EOC data network at Pocopson. Limerick exercise D-Star and HSMM data operators will be using this for the primary backup of County internet email. After the exercise, all CCAR members will be invited to establish EmComm accounts on this server.

Thanks and 73,

Lor W3QA
Emergency Coordinator
CCAR

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