The world seems like it’s coming to an end because of wildfires in California, hurricanes in North Carolina, and the Coronavirus pandemic worldwide. So what would you do to stay connected in times of crisis? You’ll probably think, go to Facebook or just iMessage them. But what if your cell phone gets drained during a nationwide blackout, or if internet connections become unreliable?
Radio technology will help you stay connected no matter the emergency. It’s vital for communication and gathering information for you to survive and prepare for whatever may come.
We’ve provided a list of emergency communication devices you can choose from.
Why You Need to Prepare for a Disaster
That’s simple. You need to prepare so you don’t get caught off guard when the disaster strikes. With a communication device that is more reliable than your mobile device, you are more likely to survive any situation. For example, CB radios provide more essential communication between families and emergency responders.
Emergency Communication Checklist
All types of emergency, whether it’s minor or SHTF, need a separate emergency communications plan. Then, it should be discussed with your family, team members, and other people who need to be involved.
Here’s a mini checklist for you:
- Ask yourself who you need to contact during an emergency. As mentioned, this will be your family, colleagues, and other people. Make a list of every person or institution to whom you will distribute the list.
- To coordinate evacuation efforts, try having a “main point of contact” with whom you will run the plan.
- Collect all the phone numbers, social media handles, and email addresses of everyone who should be involved in your plan. We also recommend having at least one contact outside of the state who will stay updated about how you are in an emergency situation. Remember that these people should be aware that they are listed as a point of contact in case an emergency happens.
With this checklist, you’ll know who to contact an who will contact you should an EMP, earthquake, or other disasters occur.
Emergency Communication Devices
Here are our most recommended communication methods in a disaster setting.
Citizens Band Radio (CB Radio)
The CB radio is a type of communication device that works in short distances and at various frequencies. It’s just like the two-way radio, which we will talk about next, although the CB radio is more complex. This is helpful for disseminating information because it is open for business and personal use.
A two-way radio is also called a walkie-talkie. It’s a pair of handheld devices that can connect with each other. It requires both users to be on the same frequency and within a certain distance only, about 5 to 35 miles only. You’re probably familiar with this already, but you talk on the walkie-talkie while the other one listens, and vice-versa.
Two-way radios are helpful among emergency responders in the field so they can talk without clogging up cell phone lines.
Amateur Radio (HAM Radio)
Ham Radio has been used during almost every emergency in the US for over a century now.
Just like a CB radio, it’s capable of short-distance communication on different frequencies. However, the HAM Radio requires the user a licensed American Amateur Radio operator. This means that you’ll get more authenticity to the information being regulated across the airwaves.
Satellite Phones (Satphones)
Satphones are slightly more expensive than other emergency communication devices. However, they are more functional especially if you live off-grid where internet access is scarce. Some of these phones have coverage in all parts of the world. That’s because the Satphone depends on the orbiting satellites in order to function, unlike the standard mobile phone towers.