Ham Licensing
  Neighborhood Emergency Radio Project | Ham Radio @ SAR City. | (white paper) What to Do When the Telephone, Cellphone and Internet Fails in a Disaster? | (option) Satellite Phones. | (option) MURS. | (option) FRS/GRMS Frequently Asked Questions | FRS/GMRS As Emergency Radios | FRS/GMRS Equipment. | Using FRS/GMRSs. | (option) CB. | (option) Ham Radio. | List:  Emergencies Hams Helped In | In Honor of Jerry Martin, W6TQF, and Reid Blackburn, KA7AMF | Ham Licensing. | Practice Ham Exams. | Ham Radio Classes. | Ham Exams. | Ham Radio in the Schools, Grants, and Emergency Communcations. | x | Legal Aspects of Emergency Communications | Links: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Organizations | Volunteering, Legal Aspects and Pitfalls. | 2006, Ham Radio @ SoRo NC. | 2006, Ham Radio @ DONE Congress. | 2007, Ham Radio @ So. Central NC. | 2007, Ham Radio @ SAR City. | 2007, La Mirada Drill. | 2007, Culver City Drill. | Personal Preparedness. | Go-Kit. | Resources: Training for EmComm Operators. | Propagation.  | Antenna Restrictions and EmComm. | Understanding Antennas. | NVIS Antenna. | Unobstrusive Antennas. | Antennas Projects - HF. | Antenna Projects - VHF/UHF. | More Antenna Projects. | Safety and First Aid. | Mobile and Portable Stations. | Emergency Power. | Emergency Alerts. | Favorite Links  


For some the FRS/GMRS option is inadequate for emergency communications.  They seek to become radio amateurs.   This is a viable option only if one is willing to learn amateur radio; that is go beyond the 1-day ham teach-to-the-test courses which over 90% of the people pass.  The ham radio option should be used only when one wants to go beyond emergency communications and wants to enjoy ham radio as a hobby.  It is a false assumption to think that one can get a ham license license, keep the radio in the drawer until the emergency happens and then try to use it.  The radio may not work, it may not b programed properly and most of all one would have forgotten how to use it, what frequencies and procedures to use.   If one is unwilling to gain and maintain the needed knowledge, skills, and abilities one is better off with FRS/GRMS. 

Amateur radio licensing has been radically changed by restructuring by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).  Previous it was a federal crime to reveal what was on the licensing examination.  After restructuring the question pools, the actual questions and their answers were published.  People who have tried unsucessfully for years to pass the licensing exam now passed.  Passage rates are typically in the 90th percentile.   

FCC has also delegated it power to examine applicants as well as to determine the content of the question pool to volunteer examiner coordinators (VEC).   There are 14 VECs.  Two of the VECs are national, the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the national organization of amateur radio, and the W5YI group, a private company.  The other VECs are regional.  The Question Pool Committee (QPC) is made of of three VECs.  The ARRL and W5YI are permanent members.  The Chairpersonship of the QPC comes from the other 12 VECs.    





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