Local Amateur Radio
Local Amateur Radio Organizations
Within Steuben County, there is a local organization of volunteer radio operators that assist the County Office of Emergency Services with emergency radio communications and severe weather spotting.
The Keuka Lake Amateur Radio Association (KLARA) works under federal guidelines established in the mid-1930s to provide radio communications for State and Local governments in times of emergency. Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) was created in 1952 primarily to serve in civil defense emergencies. RACES provides essential communications and warning links to supplement State and Local government during emergencies and disasters.
Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) is an independent program sponsored by the American Radio Relay League, (ARRL) Inc. This program provides emergency communications to Federal, State, County, and Local governments, as well as non-profit organizations. This pool of organized operators provides reliable primary or secondary communications links for governmental agencies and/or non-profit organizations when needed. The agency provides organized backup links to overloaded or disrupted communications. This agency also provides organizations with public service communications during events though out the County such as the Dansville Balloon Festival and the Wineglass Marathon. By providing this service ARES makes events within Steuben County safer and more efficient.
During disasters or emergency situations, FCC-licensed amateur radio operators from KLARA, assist Steuben County Emergency Services with severe weather notification, damage reports, and provide links to other emergency service providers, and jurisdictions throughout the State. The primary responsibility for each member is to participate in training sessions, develop a strong background in emergency procedures, be knowledgeable of FCC rules and Regulations, and network procedures. By being a member of the KLARA organization, each member is signing on to be available when the County requires emergency communications. These members prove themselves as an invaluable resource during severe weather events and organized exercises.