42 amateur radio operators from 6 counties worked together to support communications for the California International Marathon (CIM) December 5, 2015.
The CIM hosted by the Sacramento Running Association, drew over 9000 runners for this 33rd annual marathon 26.2-mile race from Folsom to downtown Sacramento. Elite racers are able to use finish times to qualify for the Boston Marathon or Olympic Marathon trial.
The Amateur radio communications teams were directed by Sacramento Valley Section Emergency Coordinator Frank Reshke N6SNO who was working his 28th CIM run. The ham radio operators provided communications via the N6ICW repeater between the seventeen Aid Stations, passing lead runner numbers to net control, as well as coordinating the tracking of runners who dropped out and needed rides to the finish line. This year radio operators were also posted on the SAG buses. This helped facilitate the tracking of the buses along the course and helped pick up runners where needed.
When an Aid Station was running low on needed supplies, the ham operators passed the supply requests to the communications trailer at the finish line. Race managers were then able to direct supply trucks to the locations that needed supplies.
For the first time, ham operators were also tasked with using fire department 800 mHz radios. These fire department radios were used to pass medical information from Aid Stations to the fire department personnel in the communications trailer for dispatch of medical assistance. We had a few glitches with the 800 mHz radio operations due to last minute changes by the race management, but we hope next year this will improve.
A big thank you goes out to the radio operators for volunteering their time to make this event a major success.
Working Aid Station 8: Vince KI6NHP, Craig KK6MNL, and Nichole KK6RGW. Photo by Andrea KI6VGK
Greg Kruckewitt, KG6SJT