MARL Emergency Communications Team

 

 

 

  • 28th June 2005: M.A.R.L. requested an appointment with the Director of Civil Protection Department (CPD).

  • 19th October 2005: 9h1ra and 9h1pi were received by the Director of Civil Protection Department and by Commanding Officer and explained how our hobby and equipment could assist CPD in case of conventional communications failure. The meeting was a success and we were to expect further instructions on how we would amalgamate under the voluntary scheme with CPD.

  • 12th November 2005: we manned 3 CPD posts Kandja, Hal-Far & Xemxija and performed tests on VHF, UHF and HF between the posts. 9h1cs, 9h1vw & 9h1yz operated from Kandja, 9h1sv, 9h1xe & 9h1tm operated from Hal Far and 9h1at & 9h1pi from Xemxija. Others joined in and 9h1pa went mobile in Dwejra and was the net controller, 9h1ak was mobile from Pembroke, 9h5sh was mobile in Aħrax L/O Mellieħa and 9h1av and 9h1bd were at their respective qth.

 
  • 20th January 2006: CPD Commanding Officer informed us that as from date Officer in charge of Communications would be coordinating with us.

 
  • 2nd August 2007: 9h1ra and 9h1pi were received by the Officer in charge of Communications in a meeting which lasted from 17:30 till 20:00. During this meeting we did a winding-up and new proposals were laid on the table to the satisfaction of both sides. Officer in charge of Communications requested our first job to be back-up communications during the mass event of Notte Magica held in Valletta on the 6th October 2007. We had to enlist a maximum of 20 persons.

  • 13th September 2007: a notice was submitted to all hams that a meeting would be held to join in the CPD body.

  • 19th September 2007 Meeting at CPD with the Director of Civil Protection Department and Officer in charge of Communications to apply as an NGO with CPD.

  • 22nd September 2007: brief tests were conducted between Valletta city gate and Kandja area on HF,VHF,UHF and ATV to determine what equipment would be needed.

  • 23rd September 2007: a meeting was held at M.A.R.L. explaining what was agreed with CPD. Present to the first meeting were: 9h1aa, 9h1ak, 9h1av, 9h1cs, 9h1ei, 9h1es, 9h1lo, 9h1m, 9h1pi, 9h1ps, 9h1ra, 9h1vw & 9h1xe. After the meeting the following applied to join : 9h1aa, 9h1ak, 9h1av, 9h1cs, 9h1es, 9h1lo, 9h1m, 9h1pi, 9h1ps, 9h1ra, 9h1vw & 9h1xe.

  • 29th September 2007 final tests were conducted between Valletta city gate and Kandja area on HF,VHF,UHF and ATV.

  • 3rd October 2007 Officer in charge of Communications called to announce that CPD has officially recognised M.A.R.L. as an NGO as per Art 4 of Legal Notice 95/2003 . An official letter followed.

  • 6th October 2007 Notte Bianca. Our first duty with CPD. Provided back-up communications and ATV feed between Valletta and Kandja.

 

    CPD Control Unit

    9h1vw & 9h1cs

    9h1m
    9h1ak
    9h1m setup
    CPD officer & 9h1xe

     

  • 11th October 2007 meeting at M.A.R.L. to discuss outcome of Notte Bianca.

  • 2nd November 2007 CPD offered influenza vaccine to its members.

  • 7th November meeting at M.A.R.L. to plan SET (Simulated Emergency Communications).

  • 11th November 2007 took part SET activity organised by IARU. We operated from Pembroke using only mobile stations, 100w and battery power.

 

    All mobile stations on different bands

    Back: 9h1xe, 9h1aa, 9h1ak, 9h1m & 9h1ps Front: 9h5ou, 9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h1ra & 9h1pi

    9h1es & 9h1vw
         
    9h1m & 9h1vw
    9h1ak, 9h1es & 9h1vw
    9h1ak
         
    9h1aa
    9h1aa, 9h1xe & 9h1pi
    9h1xe & 9h1es

 

  • 27th November 2007 meeting at M.A.R.L. on the outcome of SET. 9h1bw & 9h1yz joined in.

  • 1st December foxhunt to trace interference on 433.575 MHz. Found 2 construction cranes to be the source. Reported to MCA and interference stopped.

  • 29th December preparing for New Year's Eve Event at Valletta Waterfront.

  • 31st December Duty with CPD at New Year's Eve Event at Valletta Waterfront.

 
  • 22nd January 2008 Duty with CPD. Search for missing person at Wied Babu L/O Żurrieq using handhelds and relaying from mobile station.

  • 7th February 2008 meeting at M.A.R.L.

  • 9th February 2008 Park 4 exercise

  • 23rd February Open day at Xemxija Fire Station. 9h1vc joined in.

  • Mass celebrated by Archbishop Mgr Paul Cremona OP

    Left to right: 9h1sf, 9h1ps, 9h1pi, 9h1vw, Archbishop Mgr Paul Cremona OP, 9h1cs, 9h1aa, 9h1m, 9h1av

    Left to right: 9h1ps, 9h1aa, 9h1vw, 9h1pi, Officer in charge of Communications, 9h1av, 9h1cs, 9h1sf, 9h1m

 

  • 17th & 29th April 2008 meeting at M.A.R.L. to prepare for SET.

  • 23rd May 2008 operated 2 SET stations; one from Kordin and one from Kandja.

    9h1sf, 9h1bw, 9h1ra, 9h1vw, 9h1av

    9h1xs, 9h1vw, 9h1ra

    9h1bw, 9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h1xs, 9h1sf

 

  • 22nd August 2008 BarBQ at Marine section with all CPD volunteers.

  • 30th August 2008 - Fenkata organised by the Civil Protection Staff Association for CPD members and volunteers.

  • 24th September 2008 meeting at M.A.R.L.

  • 4th October 2008 duty with CPD during Notte Bianca.

 

    9h1pi, 9h1vc

    9h1vw

    9h1bw, 9h1m, 9h1av

 

  • 28th October 2008 meeting at M.A.R.L. to prepare for ECOM

  • 7th November 2008 ECOM organised by I.A.R.U.

 

     
    Station at Baħrija
     
         
    9h1es

    9h1xe, 9h1aa

    9h1vc, 9h1m, 9h1xe
         
    9h1aa, 9h1es
    9h1pi
    9h1aa
         
    9h1aa
    9h1xe
    Antennas: Full size windom, 2 verticals & a dipole
         
    9h1es

    Aerial view

    9h1vc, 9h1aa, 9h1es, 9h1xe, 9h1m, 9h1vw, 9h1pi
         
     
    Station at Mellieħa
     
         
    9h1sf

    9h1ak

    9h1sf, 9h1bw, 9h1ra, 9h1ps
         

 

 
  • 8th January 2009 we were informed that we were invited to attend to an earth quake scenario simulation the next day at 16:00. A meeting was called at M.A.R.L. to discuss the exercise.

  • 9th January 2009 after the briefing, postings were assigned. The exercise started at 16:00 and we were divided into 2 teams; one stationed at GHQ and the other on the site of the simulation at White Rocks complex. At the GHQ a vertical for 2m and 70cm and a dipole for 10m were rigged and on site a 5 element yagi for 2m, a vertical for 70cm and a mobile whip for 10m were rigged together with 2m and 70 cm . Power available were 60w on 2m, 35w on 70cm and 100w for 10m but we reverted to low power since stable communications were established using low power. It was noted that 70cm improved considerably during the night. 10m was also used for digital communications and proved an efficient way of passing the relayed data instead of using phonetics for some overs involving overs including medical technical words. There was very heavy communications traffic in the first hours and since most of the involved were using vhf, we opted for uhf and hf to avoid interference. The site and terrain proved challenging for communications as the area was a negative area for both commercial and amateur repeaters. After about 5 hours into the operation the batteries of the handhelds being used were starting to discharge and communications between the coordinating posts started to suffer. We were asked to help those posts, we improvised with what was available and rigged them with some of our spare antennas which could be tuned-in to their frequencies and installed them on masts and others with mobile antenna whips on metal structures. Various adaptors from sma to bnc, pl259 etc, were indispensable. So were some basic tools including soldering iron , cable ties instead of clamps and off-cuts of cable. These permitted some emergency repairs on third party equipment. The rescuers scouted all areas and casualties were given first aid or transported and taken to triage. With each discovery of a casualty, a number was assigned and then was logged via radio and followed up. We also assisted in the logging and relaying of casualty status. There were about 500 casualties both live persons and dummies who had to be found, rescued and medically assisted. At about 02:00 in the next day all the casualties were accounted for and were being treated. After a briefing, stand-down was announced.

 

     
     
    CPD Control Unit

    9h1m, 9h1pi

    9h1aa, 9h1m, 9h1pi
         
    Ex-Director of Civil Protection Department
    S.P.I.D.E.R.S. Team

    Officer in charge of Communications, 9h1pi

         
    9h1aa
    Dummy Casualty
    Dummy Casualty card
         

 

  • 11th February 2009 CPD invited those interested to attend a First Aid Course at the St. John Ambulance, our tutor being Mr. Paul Spiteri. The course consisted of 8 lessons and an exam. 9h1cs, 9h1m, 9h1pi, 9h1av, 9h1vc, 9h1es completed the course and passed the exam.

  • 16th April 2009 meeting at M.A.R.L. to discuss ECOM exercise and Valletta Main Guard display

  • 18th April 2009 CPD held a display at Main Guard in Valletta and we were invited together with the rest of the NGO's.

  •  
     
    9h1vc, 9h1m, 9h1xe

    9h1m, 9h1xe, 9h1vc, 9h1ak

    Gathering for Holy Mass
         
    Ex-Director of Civil Protection Department, Minister for justice and home affairs
    Dog Section display

    AFM band

         
    9h1sp
    9h1vc
    Antenna
         

 

  • 18th April 2009 GlobalSET organised by I.A.R.U.

     
     
    Operating under water proof tent

    9h1es

    9h5ou, 9h1aa
         
    The station
    9h1bw, 9h1pi

    9h1ps, 9h5ou, 9h1pi

         
    Batteries
    Officer in charge of Communications and an RF burn
    9h1vw
         

 

  • 10th June CPD indicated we would be assigned a caravan.

  • 11th June 2009 meeting at M.A.R.L. to coordinate installation of amateur band antennas at various CPD stations and discussed sponsorship for caravan project.

  • 12th June various letters/emails were sent to prospective sponsors : Medcomms, Marcucci, Fabian Enterprises, Sign Services, KVH Computers & GO.

  • 23rd June installed antenna at Xemxija Fire Station.

  • 7th July installed antenna at Kordin Fire Station.

  • 22 July installed antenna at Hal Far Fire Station.

     
     
    Xemxija antenna

    9h1vw, 9h1pi

    Kordin
         
    9h1ak,9h1vw
    9h1pi, 9h1es, 9h1vw, 9h1ak

    Hal Far

         

 

  • 25th September 2009 CPD offered influenza vaccine to its members.

  • 28th September 2009 installed antenna at Kandja.

  • 1st October 2009 meeting at M.A.R.L. to plan for Notte Bianca.

  • 3rd October 2009 duty with CPD Notte Bianca and simultaneously testing of all installed antennas on top of CPD stations and first glimpse of caravan.

     
     
    9h1pi

    Officer in charge of Communication

    9h1pi
         
    caravan
    caravan

    caravan

         

 

  • 29th October 2009 - 7th November CPD allowed works to be started on caravan. Special thanks to Norman for hosting the caravan during the works.

     
    9h5it, 9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h5ou

    Norman, 9h1vw, 9h5it, 9h1es

       

 

  • 1st November Fabian Enterprises donated a 12V to 220V inverter.

 

 

  • 5th November 2009 meeting at M.A.R.L. to plan for Global SET.

  • 14th & 15th November Global SET from the Għajn Tuffieħa scouts Camping site.

     
     
    9h1aa 4x4

    9h1pi, 9h1sf, 9h1bw, 9h1vw

    9h1bw operating with an SDR radio
         
    9h1sf, 9h5ou, 9h1pi, 9h1bw, 9h1vw, 9h1aa
    9h5ou

    9h1m, 9h1bw

         

 

 

  • 18th November after receiving photos of GlobalSET, Medcomms and Marcucci teamed to offer an IC- 7000 and AH-4 ATU.

 

 
 
     

 

  • 7th December 2009 works on caravan.

 

 

 
  • 1st January 2010 stand-by for New Year's Eve.

  • 30th January 2010 works on caravan. 9h1pa Joined in.

  • 11th February KVH computers donated a laptop for the Emergency Communications purposes.

 

    Keith from KVH Computers, 9h5it, 9h1aj, 9h1jt
    9h1jt, 9h1es, 9h1sf
    Donated Laptop
         

 

  • 18th - 21st March 2010 exterior works on caravan by 9h1aa, 9h1es, 9h1vw, 9h1pa, 9h1ps, 9h1vc, 9h1pi.

 

     
     
    9h1ps, 9h1aa

    9h1vc

    9h1ps, 9h1aa, 9h1vc
         
    9h1ps, 9h1aa, 9h1vw,9h1vc, 9h1pi
    9h1aa

    9h1aa, 9h1vc

         
    9h1ps, 9h1aa

    9h1aa

    9h1es, 9h1pi
         
    9h1vc
    Wet paint

    Wet paint

         

 

  • 6th April 2010 Finalisation of agreement with CPD and official handing of caravan.

  • 10th April works on caravan.

  • 15th April the team attended a briefing regarding the Papal Visit at Ta' Kandja.

  • 16th April Albert 9h5ap from Sign Services installed stickers on Caravan.

  •  
     
    9h5ap

    9h5ap

    nearly done
         

 

  • 17th April 2010 Pope Benedict XVI visit

   
 
 
Caravan being towed

The Shack

Operating on HF,VHF,UHF, following press streams and coordinating frequencies. DVR on the left recording ATV and streaming it on site LAN
     
Antennas: HF Vertical with AH-4 ATU, VHF/UHF vertical, VHF/UHF Yagi, Tripod with VHF/UHF magmount; later for ATV operation.

Central Bank Parking area

Central Bank Parking area
     
9h1ak, 9h1xe, 9h1sf
9h1vw, 9h1aa, 9h1pi

Atv tx by 9h1m, rx by 9h1vw than recorded and streamed via LAN to CPD control unit.

     
Atv tx by 9h1m, rx by 9h1vw than recorded and streamed via LAN to CPD control unit.
9h1bw with CPD staff L/O Rabat

9h5ou with CPD staff L/O Rabat

     
CPD Control Unit
Shack in CPD Control Unit at Rabat operating HF, VHF and UHF.

9h1m streaming ATV from granaries area towards the caravan with VHF/UHF talkback.

     
 
 
     
  • 6th May 2010 meeting at M.A.R.L. to discuss Global SET and Caravan Presentation. 9h5it joined in.

  • 14th - 15th May Global SET from the Għajn Tuffieħa scouts Camping site.

  •  
     
    Għajn Tuffieħa scouts Camping site.
         

    Preparing for Global SET

         
    9h5it, 9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h1pi, 9h1ps
    9h1aa, 9h1vc
    9h1xe
         
    9h1es, 9h1vw
    9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h1vc, 9h1xe
    9h1ak
         

 

  • 16th May 2010 Presentation of caravan at M.A.R.L., blessings by Parish priest and News coverage.

  •      

    TVM Coverage

    (at aprox 20.40 minutes)
         

 

  • 13th August 2010 Assisted CPD during Mosta fireworks factory search for victims.

 

  • 23rd September 2010 meeting at M.A.R.L. to discuss Notte Bianca.

  • 25th September duty with CPD during Notte Bianca.

     
     
    9h1vw, 9h1aa, 9h5it, 9h1xe

 

  • 11th November 2010 meeting at M.A.R.L. to discuss Global SET.

  • 13th November Global SET from The Scouts Island Headquarters.

 

       

    Global SET Station

    Back: 9h1es, 9h1vw, 9h5it, 9h1bw, 9h1pi

     
    Front: 9h5ou, 9h1vc, 9h1aa, 9h1ps

 

  • 25th November getogether at Waterfront between CPD Emergency Services.

  • 30th June 2011 Isle of MTV Concert Back-up communications with CPD

  •  
     
         

 

  • 1 st October Back-up communications with CPD during Notte Bianca.

  •  
     
         

 

  • 29 th October Novex National Exercise - Urban Search And Rescue

  •  
     
    Maurizio 9h5it & Chris 9h1bw rigging up
         

    Ivan 9h1pi, Chris 9h1bw & Maurizio 9h5it

    Arthur 9h1ps & Joe 9h1vw

    photo by Steven 9h1sf

         

 

  • 12th November 2011 Global SET

  •  
     
    9h1m, 9h1aa, 9h5it, 9h1xe, 9h1vw, 9h1es, 9h1sf, 9h1bw, 9h1vc, 9h1pi
    9h1xe, 9h1aa, 9h5it, 9h1vc, 9h1m, 9h1sf, 9h1bw, 9h1vw, 9h1pi, 9h1es
         

    Rigging tool

    Rigging up full size windom antenna

    9h1xe, 9h1vc, 9h1m

         

 

  • 28th January 2012 Simulation of Fire, Search and Rescue exercise at the Radisson Baypoint with CPD and other volunteers.

 

  • 12th March 2012 Requested to assist CPD during the force 9 Storm.

 

  • 16th May 2012 National Search and Rescue exercise at Ħal-Ferħ. Full Report

9h1xe, 9h1vw, 9h1pi, 9h1bw
9h1xe Edwin
9h1bw Chris
9h1vw Joe & 9h1pi Ivan
Ħal-Ferħ Complex

 

  • 26th June 2012 Isle of MTV Isle of MTV Concert Back-up communications with CPD

 

  • 13th - 15th September 2012 Requested to provide radio back-up to CPD during a 3 day flash floods and severe thunder storms.

 

  • 15th September 2012 installation of a new HF Vertical antenna at Ta' Kandja.

 

  • 29th September 2012 duty with CPD during Notte Bianca.

 

  • 3rd November 2012 Novex. National training with CPD, all NGO's and volunteers.

An alert was issued at 4am. By 6am we had to report at the base of operation, get instructions and proceed to sites. Our duty was to setup up communication equipment for all units and bases.

Site 1: Kalkara Road Traffic Accident - Number of Casualties: 25/30 - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1m & 9h1sf

Site 2: Hal Ferħ Complex Collapsed Buildings - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1pa& 9h1ps

Site 3: Ta’ Kandja Quarry Number of Casualties: 3- Setup relay station. - Manned by 9h5it

Site 4: 4. Golden Bay Cliffs Number of Casualties: 1 - Setup relay station. - Manned by 9h1pa& 9h1ps

Site 5: Mistra Village Complex Number of Casualties: 4 - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1vw& 9h1es

Site 6: Mistra Village Complex Silo Number of Casualties: 2 - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1vw& 9h1es

Site 7: Bighi Reservoir Number of Casualties: 1 - Setup relay station. - Manned by 9h1m & 9h1sf

Site 8: Petroleum Tank Explosion Number of Casualties: Unknown - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1vw& 9h1es

Site 9: Base of operation - Setup relay station and ATV feed. - Manned by 9h1pi& 9h5it

Site 10: Repeating station - Setup relay station for sites 2, 4, 5 &6 - Manned by 9h1bw

 

 

Simulated overturned bus with casualties
9h1sf rigged up
9H1M ATV
   
Simulated overturned bus with casualties
9h1m with ATV feed
9h1m rigged up
     
ATV stream on test monitor
9h1pi at control room with all NGO's
Fire Tower at Ħal-Far
     
Xemxija site
9h1vw 9h1m with ATV feed
Xemxija site
     
Near Torri tan-Nadur
Repeating station
Near Torri tan-Nadur
     

 

 

  • 13th & 15th April 2013 Global SET.

 

  • 26th June 2013 Isle of MTV Concert Back-up communications with CPD.

 

  • 1st March 2014 CPD Open Day
   

9h1pi, 9h1aa,9h1ps, 9h1vw, 9h1xe, 9h1ra,

9h1m, 9h1sf, 9h5it, 9h1bw

HF Station
Caravan with HF,VHF,UHF & ATV antennas
     
9h1xe Edwin
9h1vw Joe & 9h1es Fortunato
9h1sf Steve
     

9h1pi Ivan, 9h1m Dominic

& 9h1aa George

ATV receiving end with camera feeds from receivers

and recording on DVR

9h1ra Ray

     
     

 

 

  • 7th July 2015 Isle of MTV Concert Back-up communications with CPD.

 

  • 2nd - 6th September 2015 SIMIT exercise in Malta andGozo.

 

Golden Bay
Antenna setup
9h1bw with CPD Director and Minister
9h1xe co-ordinating with the other NGOs
Golden Bay Shack
Golden Bay Team
Xewkija
Antenna setup
Antenna setup
Qortin
Gozo Team
Convoy back home
           
   
ATV VIDEO STREAM FROM SITE TO BASE
   
     

 

 

  • 28th September - 1st October 2015 SIMIT exercise at Lampedusa Island. This was our first overseas dispatch.

First layer of our equipment
Second layer of our equipment
All our equipment
Loading gear on AFM P52 towards Lampedusa
Arrival at Lampedusa
Port of Lampedusa
           
Our base of operation
Antenna setup
Shack
Portable station
Crevice rescue
Caravan at Ħad-Dingli
           
       
           

 

  • 13th January 2016 4.4 Tremor in Malta

A tremor measuring 4.4 on the Richter scale was felt all over Malta. The tremor, which lasted a good 10 seconds, was felt just after 6pm. It was at a depth of 39 kilometers some 32 kilometers north east off Malta. It appears that the tremor was stronger in Gozo where readers reported it was accompanied by rumbling.

The MARL Emergency Communications team activated a net on 145.300 and R1 coordinators were alerted.

 

 

 

 

  • 28th June 2016 Isle of MTV Concert Back-up communications with CPD.

 

  • 1st October 2016 duty with CPD during Notte Bianca.