“Snowfall that started early this morning in the Mid-Atlantic
States was just the first hint of what weather forecasters are
calling a potentially historic and dangerous winter storm that is
predicted to affect the entire Eastern Seaboard of the US. In
addition, the gathering storm carries the threat of high winds,
blowing and drifting snow, “whiteout conditions,” and possible —
perhaps likely — power outages. A state of emergency has been
declared in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Massachusetts, and
Connecticut Gov Dan Malloy ordered a statewide travel ban effective
at 9 PM on Monday, January 26.
Eastern Pennsylvania Section Manager Joe Ames, W3JY, reported that
the Eastern Pennsylvania Phone and Traffic Net has been put on
standby/watch mode on 3917 kHz. “We anticipate no particular
activation in Eastern Pennsylvania,” he said, “but if it’s as
bad as predicted, we’ll assist however we can.” Snow has already
begun falling in Eastern Pennsylvania.
Connecticut Section Manager Betsey Doane, K1EIC, said all ARES
District Emergency Coordinators have been asked to let Red Cross
offices in their areas know that ARES is available, if needed. “Red
Cross shelters lately are opening after the storm settles, unless
otherwise needed,” she said. “The usual activities are going on,
with batteries being charged and go kits ready.”
Doane said the Connecticut Digital Mobile Radio network was up and
running, with ARES officials monitoring, and the state EOC is tied in
with the Connecticut ARES network.
In Maine, store traffic has been brisk in coastal areas as
residents stock up on necessary food, fuel, and supplies as well as
generators, additional batteries, and auxiliary heaters, in case of a
power outage. Maine SEC Phil Duggan, N1EP, has placed Maine ARES on a
Yellow Alert (Level 1), due to the approaching storm, which is
forecast to reach the state sometime after midnight. In a Yellow
Alert, ARES/RACES members are advised that they may be called up and
should monitor available ARES nets and public safety radios as well
as weather radios and broadcast radio and TV to stay current with the
situation. Duggan said the NWS office in Caribou — in Maine’s
northernmost tier — has requested that he call up some Maine ARES
weather and SKYWARN nets on 75 meters to collect ground-level weather
information during and after the storm for relay to the NWS offices
in Caribou and Gray, Maine.
The approaching storm has caused airlines to cancel some 5000
flights so far. Schools have called for early dismissal in parts of
New Jersey. New York anticipated closing the New York Thruway and the
Long Island Expressway. The entire New York City subway system may be
shut down by this evening."
We now take you to audio from Radio New Zealand International's
dateline pacific program on plans to fix the state of broadcasting in Vanuatu: [Audio: RNZIdateline_048_vanuatu.mp3]
“Along with plans for new management and to shed a third of the
staff of Vanuatu's national broadcaster, the government is also
looking to modernise the Vanuatu Broadcasting and Television
Despite millions of dollars of aid poured into the VBTC
over the years, it is unable to provide adequate radio coverage for
the outer islands, and even in areas close to the main centre.
By the government's own admission, the VBTC is hamstrung,
and has not been able to move with the times, but it says it has the
political will to make changes for the good.
Leilani Momoisea reports.
Just last week, worries were raised that some communities in
Vanuatu could miss out on cyclone warnings due to transmission
problems with the national broadcaster's Radio Vanuatu. Our
correspondent, Hilaire Bule, says there's confirmation that Pentecost
Island is not receiving transmissions from Radio Vanuatu, and people
in Ambae and further North in the Banks and Torres island groups also
have trouble getting the station. He says transmission problems with
Radio Vanuatu have been ongoing for years, and it's not just the
outer-islands that have issues.
HILAIRE BULE: In the Daily Post people from Efate, they are
complaining about the reception of their national radio, and it's
about three kilometres from the main radio station in Port Vila. It's
dangerous because Vanuatu is now entering the cyclone season and
people cannot receive the warning of the possible cyclone in the
villages or in the communities.
In 2009, Japan, New Zealand and Australia poured millions into
funding a project which allowed the VBTC to set up a new shortwave
transmitter to provide a radio signal to all the Vanuatu islands.
However, over the years since then, signals have failed, with some
equipment now having major corrosion issues. Jean Gabriel Manguy, a
private consultant who was involved in helping Radio Vanuatu improve
its services back then, says it's been a pattern of millions of
dollars invested into the company, going down the drain. He says
that's partly due to a lack of maintenance and political
JEAN-GABRIEL MANGUY: There has also been mismanagement, and in
spite of a very significant aid project to help them, it hasn't
helped the situation. It's disappointing to see once again there
hasn't been any money allocated to maintaining transmitters. In other
words, people in the rural areas, in the islands and in the remote
areas, are being forgotten.
The government has set up a committee to review the VBTC, with
plans to retire or make redundant about a third of the staff, and is
looking for a new general manager to head the VBTC. The Vanuatu Media
Association says the government needs to recruit the right person to
steer the company forward, and it needs strong leadership from the
top to bottom levels. It says it is perhaps a good idea for the
government to down-size the company, however, the government
restructured the VBTC in 1999, and some 16 years later, the same
problems are happening again.
The Public Relations Officer for the
Prime Minister's Office, Kierry Manassah, says the problems with the
VBTC are perennial, and are partly due to a lack of political will
from the national level, political interference, and people going
into the company through the wrong channels.
KIERRY MANASSAH: A lot of those has caused a lot of problems for
the organisation. The government still sees a lot of value in VBTC,
it's like the bridge between the government and the people. And so
the government still values it's contribution to the national
conversations, and we still think that the government can do
something about it.
Kierry Manassah also chairs the task-force that is looking at how
the corporation can move from analog to digital programming, and he
says there's a need to look at who from VBTC needs to go in light of
new technology. He says they are currently looking for partners to
help with the national digitisation of TV, and will look to these
partners to also address radio transmission issues. Mr Manassah says
depending on expressions of interest, there's the possibility that
the government will contract out the management of the digital TV
broadcast service to a private company. And in terms of fixing radio
transmission issues, he says the government is considering switching
KIERRY MANASSAH: That's the way forward, a lot of those that are
still there now are short-wave and medium wave transmitters,
especially with the short-wave transmitters, those are quite old and
it's very difficult to find spare parts and replacements. So a lot of
those need to be overhauled.
Jean Gabriel Manguy says the government's committment to do
something about broadcasting is welcomed and very encouraging.
However, he says while in theory FM radio is a great idea, it's not
JEAN-GABRIEL MANGUY: Instead of having one or two transmitters to
manage, then you need probably 50 transmitters to manage. Not only do
you have to manage them, but you have to have electricity to make
them function. So there are technical issues there that limit the FM
Mr Manguy says new technologies need to be investigated, like
perhaps making use of the substantial telephone network going across
the country. Kierry Manassah says the government is not blind to the
concerns and complaints about VBTC, but the taskforce is trying to
address these issues, and ensure the VBTC is the national broadcaster
that everybody expects.”
“German Weather Service (DWD) will begin transmitting weather
information for the Baltic Sea and North Sea. Broadcast will be three
times a day from their site in Pinneberg, near Hamburg. Broadcast
will commence on April 1, 2015 on the following schedule:
UTC 6040 kHz
“Effective February 1, there are key frequency changes from
Radio Australia. There will be an end of shortwave transmissions
(including DRM), from the Brandon site, and a reduction in
transmission hours from the Shepparton transmitter site. There are no
further DRM transmissions currently planned.
with the end of the HF Relay services from 14 January 2015, this
represents a major change in content delivery for Radio Australia,
with an increasing focus on local FM re-transmission and satellite
delivery of programming.
The following revised broadcast
schedule supersedes all previously published plans. Radio Australia
will operate on three frequencies, on a 24 hour broadcast schedule.
Earlier reports of broadcasting 0900-2100 UTC on 6080, and 6150 are
All times UTC
Effective 01 February
All programming targeted to various Pacific regions
0000-0100 15240 15415 17840
0200-0300 15240 15415 17840
0300-0400 15240 15415
0400-0500 15240 15415 17840
0500-0600 15240 15415
0600-0630 15240 15415 17840
0700-0800 15240 15415
0800-0805 Sat/Sun 15240 15415 17840
15240 15415 17840
0900-1000 9580 12065 12085
1100-1200 9580 12065 12085
1200-1300 9580 12065
1300-1400 9580 12065 12085
1400-1500 9580 12065
1500-1600 9580 12065 12085
1600-1700 9580 12065
1700-1800 9580 12065 12085
1800-1900 9580 12065
1900-2000 9580 12065 12085
2000-2100 9580 12065 12085
2100-2200 15240 15415 17840
2200-2300 15240 15415
2300-0000 15240 15415 17840
Sat/Sun 15240 15415 17840
0630-0700 Sat/Sun 15240 15415
0900-0915 Sat/Sun 9580 12065
(Gary Baxter, Transmission Planning
Executive/Radio Australia/RAOS B14 v3.3)”
(Via the shortwave central blog)
“Public radio is beginning to surpass public television in terms
of donations, according to a report issued by the Corporation for
The number of individual donors to public television dropped from
3.9 million in 2003 to 3.03 million in 2013; at the same time, public
radio donors grew from 2.52 million to 2.85 million from 2003 to
2013, according to the report.
The average contribution for radio is slightly higher for radio
than for TV; it was $92 per person in 2003 and grew to $137 in 2013,
according to CPB. The average contribution for TV was $93 in 2003
which grew to $134 in 2013.
Across the board for both radio and television, several donation
categories — CPB, federal and state grants, local governments and
local business — went down from 2012 to 2013, according to the
findings. CPB doesn’t speculate on the reasons for the change,
however RW has reported that public broadcasting has been heavily
impacted by the economic downturn.
Revenue from categories like state colleges and universities,
foundations and subscribers offset those losses for both public radio
and television. Total support for public radio in 2013 was $1.08
billion, with public TV at $1.69 billion. That’s a 0.3% change for
television and a 4.8% increase for public radio, compared to the year
before, according to the findings.
The bulk of station revenue, some 29%, comes from individual
subscribers, with 15% from CPB and 14% from foundations. The rest
comes from a mixture of funds from colleges, foundations, business
and other sources, according to CPB.”
Yes it's time to have a look at the latest pirates logs:
Here are the Europirate logs for the end of January
Wednesday 28th Januray 2015
6300 1805 Radio Blauwe Panter. Rolling Stones "Angie,"
some utility QRM. SINPO 43433. Moved to 6297 at 1813. SINPO
6305 1728 Radio Merlin Int. Canned Heat "On the Road
Again," ID, address, utilty QRM. SINPO 42332
Sunday 25th January 2015
4026 1729 Laser Hot Hits. The Kane Gang. SINPO 34333.
1735 Barracuda Radio. Lenny Kravitz. SINPO 44444.
Laser Hot Hits via Magic. KC & Sunshine Band, swamped at
1719 by Iran signing on. SINPO 44433.
6305 0956 Radio Merlin Int. Sixties music. SINPO 24332.
1656 Wizard Radio. Short song, female singer. SINPO 23332.6401.5 1649 Radio Joey. "Swamp Thing." SINPO 34333.
0916 Radio Europe. Chaka Khan "I Feel for You." SINPO
6940 0913 Radio Enterprise. "Addams Family."
7300 0906 U Boat 66 Radio. "Last Picture of
You." SINPO 24332.
9865 1415 Radio Spaceshuttle via Revival. ID, "Telstar."
//6035. SINPO 54444.
12105L 0948 Radio Barracuda. ID, soft rock.
I really enjoy the quirky pirates on air and I'd like to share the
Zex Chettle Alien Broadcast from 2008 6925USB. Reminds me of the
movie “Mars attacks”. [Audio]
Heading over to North America:
6925USB 00h52 Radio Ga Ga 28th January Just signed on with
unshazammable music, S7 signal. By member Chris Smolinski
6770 22h50 Old Time Radio 27th January Radio program from the
golden age in process. Fair signal keeping above persistent static.
QRM from adjacent UTE? By member Edward Insinger
6950 23h41 Weather Control Radio 25th January 2356 Riders on the
storm, 2359 stormy monday, 022off s5 here but rather fady. By member
11428 Channel Z 23h33 27th January S6-7 signal with Andy Walker
show. By member kilokat7
North American Logs via the HF underground forum. (We also thank
other members contributions to the pirate logs that may have not got
We also have a pirate news story to share:
“The FCC has ordered an unlicensed California religious
broadcaster, who sometimes broadcast on a frequency in the 40 meter
phone band, to shut down his station. The FCC’s Los Angeles
District Office on December 31 issued a Notice
of Unlicensed Operation to Martin K. Elliott of
Inyokern, California. The FCC said it issued the Notice in
response to a complaint of unlicensed operation on multiple HF
frequencies, including some allocated to aeronautical stations. The
FCC said its agents used radio direction-finding techniques to
confirm that signals on 6280 kHz and 11,595 kHz were emanating from a
residence located near Inyokern, and that property records indicated
that Elliott was the current owner and resident.
“The Commission’s records show that no license was issued for
operation of a station on either the frequencies of 6280 kHz or 11595
kHz at this location,” the FCC wrote. “Unlicensed operation of
this radio station must be discontinued immediately.”
The pirate station, which identified itself
as “YHWH,” was not cited for operating on Amateur Radio
frequencies, although ARRL Official Observers had monitored the
station in the past on 7185 kHz LSB. One short-wave listener said the
operator of YHWH changed frequencies regularly, and the station had
not been heard on the ham bands for at least several months.
The FCC warned Elliott that operation of radio transmitting
equipment without a valid authorization violates federal law and
could subject the operator to severe penalties, including, but not
limited to, substantial monetary forfeitures, equipment seizure, and
The Commission gave him 10 days to respond. The FCC said
its Notice “does not preclude this office from pursuing
additional sanctions based upon our investigation of this incident.””
DX Extra is being relayed via World FM 88.2FM in Tawa, near
Wellington in New Zealand, Worldfm dot co dot nz and on shortwave
via relay partners as well so look out for us on Focus International,
Magic 6205 Europe, Pandora Radio, Premier Radio and Cupid Radio. A
big thank you to all our relay partners. Your generosity means a lot!
Before we go it's time to get an audio clip out of the archives.
This is a shortwave recording of Radio Thailand January 23rd 2015 on
9390 at 12h30UTC.
Until next time remember shortwave radio is still full of
mysteries – keep tuning and keep reporting. Take care and stay safe
Image: Radio Australia - following more cutbacks.