Use and Benefits
Examples of how GENOAK can be used to benefit individuals and neighborhood/CERT groups in and around Oakland include the following:
Before an Emergency (Preparation)
During an Emergency (Response)
After an Emergency (Recovery)
Most GENOAK communications will probably take place after an emergency or disaster, known as the recovery period. During this time landline phone and cellular service may be overloaded or unavailable and 2-way radio communications may be the only way to efficiently get messages in and out of neighborhood/CERT groups.
Use with the Amateur (Ham) RACES Network
The primary civilian emergency radio network is the Amateur (Ham) Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES). This is an official (FCC) service that may be activated by the City during an emergency. The Oakland Radio Communication Association (ORCA) RACES team is tasked with communicating priority emergency traffic with Oakland’s Office of Emergency Services’ (OES) Emergency Operations Center (EOC), which will help coordinate response efforts by the fire and police departments and other responders.
GENOAK complements the RACES network by providing a way for neighborhood/CERT groups to connect and assist each other without impacting official emergency radio communications.
The following diagram shows how neighborhood/CERT groups use FRS radios to communicate between neighbors. It also depicts how the Amateur (Ham) RACES network connects to Oakland’s OES/EOC to transmit priority emergency traffic via the ORCA (Oakland Radio Communication Association) repeater. Finally, it shows how GENOAK can connect neighborhood/CERT groups with each other and with the Amateur/RACES network via Net Liaison Operator relays.