Polk County Amateur Radio Emergency Service, ARES, provides emergency and public service communications to our served agencies. Getting the message through “when all else fails”.

Our served agencies are Polk County Emergency Management, American Red Cross, Polk County CERT Teams, Polk County Hospitals, and the Municipalities located within Polk County.

Our next meeting will be on Thursday, April 25th at 7:00pm.  Doors open at 6:30pm.  For more information, click here.  We will be discussing topics related to the upcoming hurricane season.  

For information about the 2024 Disaster Sales Tax Holidays, which are June 1st through June 14th, as well as August 24th thru September 6th, click here.

ARRL Learning Center Features Two New Emergency Communication Training Courses – 05/10/2024

ARRL has released two new courses to train emergency communications (EmComm) operators for volunteering within the Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES®). Both courses are within the ARRL Learning Center.

The new courses replace the previous EC-001 and EC-016 programs, however, certificates of completion earned for the previous courses are still valid. “

*** April 2024 **** Special note regarding SARNET – The Web site URL has changed as the domain for the Web site was transferred to the State.  The new URL is https://sarnetfl.org

The State EOC and the FDOT have signed an MOU for SARNET! The State EOC is now the custodian of the SARNET service and the FDOT will continue to host the network that links SARNET repeaters together. This is a significant event and we thank the FDOT and the state EOC for their support and recognition of this important communications service. With the state EOC at the helm, SARNET will continue to support emergency events that impact the state of Florida.

*** Be advised, the Lakeland SARNET repeater remote base is not functioning correctly.  Noisy reception for inbound SARNET traffic and outbound transmissions from the Lakeland SARNET repeater ARE NOT going out onto the network. ***

The theme for 2024 ARRL Field Day is “Be Radio Active.” The event will run on June 22 – 23, and it will be one-part contest, one-part emergency communications exercise, and one-part open house — and a great time.   If you’re looking for ARRL Field Day information and resources, click here.

For Polk County, the Lakeland Amateur Radio Club will be hosting a field day with participation  of the Lake Wales Radio Amateurs, for a combined Field Day event at the Kathleen Area Historical Society Heritage Park.  This location is at 8950 N Campbell Rd, Lakeland, FL 33810 (click here for Google Map).  

The FCC will require the use of multi-factor authentication beginning March 29, 2024. Licensees use to pay any application or regulatory fees, manage or reset a password on an existing FRN, or request a new FRN. 

One of our served agencies, CERT, as well as other emergency communicators, have a GMRS net on the Polk CERT repeater.  (note: This is NOT an ARES net, but welcome to all FCC licensed GMRS operators interested in emergency communications)

The Polk ARES ICS-205 and Polk County ARES Band Plan have been updated.  You can find them under the Operations menu option at the top of this page.

Our focus is on preparation and training for wireless communications during disasters and public service events.  A  Statewide Florida Emergency website has been opened.  Come check it out.  

Winlink RMS Gateways in Polk County

144.930 WC4PEM-5
144.950 W4PSR-5

The Imperial Polk County ARES Net is held every Wednesday at 7:00pm EST on the following frequencies on the Polk County Emergency Management, WC4PEM, repeater system:

This is a wide area linked repeater system. Pick the repeater located closest to you. You should be able to reach one of our repeaters with a 5 watt HT from anywhere in Polk County. If you are not, please contact Polk ARES through our contact page and we will help you find an antenna solution.

The repeater is Echolink accessible (Echolink node 3363).

Click here for a coverage map of the WC4PEM repeater system.

The WC4PEM D-Star Gateway repeater located in Bartow is on 444.4875.  You can view the dashboard for this repeater by clicking here.