20. We have been notified by Joe Hibberd, W3QLC, that he has resigned as ARES EC effective Jan, 14, 2024. Our ARES Unit is extremely grateful for the dedication and efforts Joe has put into his position as EC. We wish him the best!!

  19. On June 7 and again on June 28, Washington County ARES members supported two (2) drills for the Prairie Island Nuclear Power Plant evacuation center located at Park High School located in Cottage Grove. This school is one of several designated locations where evacuees from a radiological incident could be directed. Twelve (12) members were

issued ARMER radios and staffed 10 stations. KB0SED Dave provided a UHF portable repeater that was located in the building for both drills. The UHF repeater provided superior coverage within the building over a VHF repeater used in previous years. Thanks to Dave and all participating members!

  18. During the 2023 LSCB flood event, 11 ARES members served 204.5 hours across eleven days in Lake St. Croix Beach, Minnesota, on the St. Croix River. According to EC Joe (W3QLC) our service allowed the city to keep roads near the river passable and residents able to get in and out of their residences as well.  Thanks to the Washington County ARES Unit!!

  17. Washington County ARES secured all watch standing at 1700 on Friday, 4/28/2023. The water level has retreated to the Minor Flood Stage and continues downward. Thanks to EC Joe and all ARES members for their planning and hours of manning posts. 

  16. Washington County ARES members are standing watch at the traffic barriers in Lake St. Croix Beach. As established by the city and LSCB Emergency Manager, the traffic barriers are to keep the gawkers from driving through streets covered with water, and over hoses from pumps. Water up to and over roads does soften road beds and would keep residents out of their homes, so some pumping is required for resident access and prevention of evacuations. Residents have seen up to 40 cars per hour driving on soft roads and across lawns and over hoses. This traffic management  is also aided by closing roads with Jersey   barriers. The flood forecast shows the St. Croix River level is near its crest and is projected to stay level for this week. Rain over the weekend may alter that. We shall just have to wait and see. 

  15. WASHINGTON COUNTY ARES UNIT ACTIVATED: 4/22/2023, Saturday, at 9 AM. 

  14. Minnesota Section Conference will be held on October 14, 2023. Put this date on your calendar and hope you can join us. Location and details To Be Determined.

 13. St. Croix River continues to rise. We watch the Stillwater river gage and it is scheduled to hit Major Flood Stage on or about Monday, April 17. So, stay tuned and listen for EC Joe to give us instructions. 

12. We have a new Washington County ARES EC: W3QLC Joe Hibberd !! Welcome aboard, Joe!! Thanks for picking up the batton!! 

 11. There is a rumor of a possible Minnesota Section Convention. Stay tuned for more    information. 

10 First Annual MN ARES Conference Feb. 26, 2022 via Zoom. See Events Tab for info.

 9. Three-fourths of all Tornadoes in Minnesota occur in the months of May, June, and July, the worst months by frequency of occurence. Minnesota had 52 Tornadoes in 2020, nearly double the average of 28 (for the years 1950 - 2018). Washington county had 25 tornadoes in 2020. Source: MN DNR website.

 8. EC John KA0HYR has resigned effective January 31 after 12+ years of service in this role. A replacement has not been found to date. Thanks for all your support. 

.7. Nine members of the Washington County ARES group participated in the ARC/ARES DWinlink Drill on Nov. 14, 2020. The next drill is scheduled for May 8, 2021. Hope you can join us. 

....6. SET 2020 held & completed Oct. 1-3. Report submitted to ARRL and Metro DEC. SET deemed smooth and successful. Increased capabilities utilized thanks to AEC's skills and initiatives. 

.5. Sample Messages for SET 2020 using forms under "Files" on this web site.
...A. Message 1 -ARRL Radiogram as simulated hospital communicator: Sequential number of your message; Precedence = Routine; Station of Origin (Your Call); Check number (number of words in the body of message); Name, Address and Phone Number of recipient (Make up one); Text: This is a Drill X Patients continue arriving X 40 open beds remain X (Check 14);  Signature (=hospital incident Commander, Make up a name). 
.B. Message 2 - ICS 213 Form as simulated shelter communicator; Incident Name: SET 2020; To: Jim Cotmann, Shelter Manager; From: Ben Shelterillo, Shelter Manager Shelter B; Subject: Shelter Status; Date & Time as appropriate; Message: This is a Drill. Shelter B set up and receiving clients. Need meals for 58 at 1700. ; Approved by Ben Shelterillo, Shelter Manager, Shelter B. Pass as Routine or Urgent. 

....C. Message 3 - ICS 213 Form sent by Red Cross Shelter Coordinator; Incident Name: SET 2020; To: All Shelter Managers; From: Fatima, Shelter Coordinator; Subject: Occupant Status; Date and Time as appropriate; Message: This is a Drill. All shelters report number of occupants and number cots available as of 0900, 1300, and 2000. Submit needs as soon as known. ; Approved by Fatima, Red Cross Shelter Coordinator. Send as Routine precedence. 

4. The 147.180 repeater is up and running at two sites and can be heard across the length of Washington County (over 40 miles). The Newport site uses a PL Tone of 74.4 and the Forest Lake site uses a PL Tone of 100. This is the repeater in our Washington County ARES Emergency Communictions Plan. 

 3. All Face - To - Face ARES activities in suspension  until further notice due to Covid-19.

  2. Want to watch flood stage river gauges in Minnesota? go to   

  1. AERO 101 Class was held on February 22,  2020.  AERO 102, the next class, is being evaluated regarding actually being held. Stay tuned for decision. 

-  -  -  -  2019  -  -  -  -  V  V  V  V

Simulated Emergency Test (SET) held on September 18-21, 2019. Report submitted to ARRL. Thanks to all our ARES participants and to Washington County Sheriff's Department communications for your support!!

The Mobile and Go-Kit Picnic was held on June 20,2019, Edgewater Park in Woodbury. There was a Special Event Station operating from there. SARA, SEMARC, and Mining Clubs were  especially invited to attend. Despite stormy weather, members brought their latest Go-Kit or Mobile installation or a notebook to take notes for their next project. 


Consider volunteering for the Hospital Net on the first Thursday of each month, 12:30 PM. We still have some hospitals that need operators for this net. Our goal is to get 50% of our hospitals covered beginning in May. WashCo ARES covers six hospitals in the SE metro area. We need to be prepared for any eventuality where needed.  


Note: MN VOAD Spring Conference on March 23, Saturday. Check their web site for details and registration information. 

UPDATE: As EC, I attended a Hospital Compact /Hospital Coalition meeting on March 5. A greater emphasis will be placed on achieving more participation by ham radio operators at the first Thursday net on the Hennepin County Repeater at 12:30 PM. We try to cover six hospitals on the east side and will need some more ARES members to check-in from hospitals for this net. As of March 5, we have no coverage for St. Joe's, and Regina. We will ask ARES hams to step up for this request. Please consider this. 

NEWS: Mobile and Go-Kit Picnic: July 20, Edgewater Park in Woodbury

NEWS: 2019 REP Drill Scheduled for June 19; Hands On Training May 22. 

News: SEMARC repeater 147.180+ (PL 74.4) back on line. Give it a try.

News: AUXCOMM Class CANCELLED FOR Nov. 17 & 18. Reason is insufficient numbers. Please watch next spring for another offering. In the mean time, continue to take the pre-requisite ICS courses of ICS 100, 200, 700 & 800. The latest editions will be required.  

NEWS: WashCoARES completed its Simulated Emergency Test (SET) on Sept. 19. Records have been analyzed and the Form A SET Report has been completed and sent to ARRL. This exercise was completed a little earlier than the regular ARRL October date due to preferences of our members. Things work better and equipment is easier to use in the warmer weather. Thanks to all who supported us in this exercise. 

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Amateur Radio Emergency Services