About Sedgwick County R.A.C.E.S.

Founded in 1952, the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) was established under the Federal Communications Commission Rules and Regulations, as part of the amateur radio service. The mission of RACES is to establish and maintain the leadership and organizational infrastructure necessary to provide amateur radio communications in support of emergency management entities throughout the United States and its territories.

RACES is employed during a variety of emergency/disaster situations where normal governmental communications systems have sustained damage or when additional communications are required or desired. Situations that RACES can be used include: natural disasters, technological disasters, civil disorder, nuclear/chemical incidents, acts of terrorism or enemy attack.

Although the FCC is responsible for the creation and regulation of RACES operations, administration of the service is the responsibility of the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA). FEMA is charged with the task of administrating the RACES groups because of its role in national disaster preparedness and disaster aid and recovery. Due to the structure of FEMA, each RACES group is, in turn, administrated by a local government agency responsible for disaster services.

The importance of RACES operations cannot be stressed enough. The Amateur Radio Regulations, Part 97, Subpart F, were created by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to describe RACES operations in detail. Although no longer issued, special licenses were issued in the past by the FCC to government agencies for RACES operations.

          


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