Net Control Tips

Net Control Station (NCS) Role and Responsibilities.  Call sign W0KCN


  1. NCS shall direct all traffic (Directed Net) All stations check in and out of the net.
  2. NCS logs reports on the Northland ARES website.  Can be delegated to Backup.
  3. NCS should have access to NWS radar to guide mobile stations. Can be delegated to Liaison station.
  4. NCS and Liaison will coordinate reports to be submitted to NWSCHAT
  5. NCS shall announce periodically conditions that meet reportable criteria

¾ inch (dime size) or larger hail, thunderstorm-related damage, 50 mph or greater winds, flash flooding, tornadoes, funnel clouds, snow or ice accumulations

  1. for Emergency Traffic – NCS in hearing a response from a NLARES that he or she has emergency traffic will  announce on the air “ Hold the air for emergency traffic only”  this way giving the operator the air to report the emergency to NCS.
  2. Once the emergency traffic has been relayed the NCS will announce “ the air is clear to resume normal traffic” and all operators may resume normal information relay.NCS shall have the ability to modify guidelines according to the needs of the net
  3. NCS can use tactical calls (suffix)
  4. NCS is recommended to use the net’s spotters to look at an area of concern from multiple directions, a team approach.
  5. NCS will inform any station checking in if there signal is weak to allow them to improve there station 


Backup Role   Use your own call sign until you assume net control, then use W0KCN


1.      Backup station will take on roll of NCS in the event of primary station is having an outage or is requested by NCS.

2.      Backup can log on the NORTHLAND ARES web site for primary NCS if mutually agreed upon.

3.      Backup (with proper access) can also perform as backup to NWSCHAT liaison station.   Without access to NWSCHAT, Backup can use 800-438-0596 Spotter Hotline.

4.      Can assist primary Net Control if conditions warrant.


Liaison Station Role and Responsibilities (Use your own call sign) (Tactical-“Liaison”)


1.        Logs into NWSCHAT, providing liaison and reporting the Northland ARES net activation and deactivation.  (Identifier NORTHLANDARES-Clay/Platte)                 

2.        Reports to the net all NWS bulletins and information pertinent to Clay / Platte counties.

3.        When applicable-Liaison between the net and SKYWARN.  Always mention information has been already posted on NWSCHAT.

3        Liaison should have access to NWS radar. 

4        Liaison will use SKYWARN or 800-438-0596 if NWSCHAT is unavailable.







Mobile stations role and responsibilities.


Mobile stations (For Safety Concerns) will have priority status during warnings.


  1. Report location and inform NCS if change of status or location.
  3. Follow all traffic laws.
  4. For personnel safety reasons mobile spotting after dark is discouraged. 


Fixed stations role and responsibilities


  1. Never provide information that is second hand unless you are requesting someone to investigate the report.
  2. If reporting conditions from your neighborhood, just use a street name and the hundred block (major intersections are preferred) and not reveal your home address, if possible


Guidelines for portable, mobile and fixed stations


  1. Always ensure your own safety first.
  2. Use standard amateur radio phonetics for checking into net and clarity of reports.
  3. Use plain English. No Q codes.
  4. Extraneous comments not welcome.
  5. Report observations and developing conditions consistent with reaching NWS   severe weather criteria.
  6. Originating reporting station observing funnel cloud/actual tornado shall request the air clear mode.  Only priority traffic will be allowed preceded by the words BREAK-BREAK from other stations observing same or other funnel cloud/tornado.  Stations with lesser priority traffic shall remain off air until NCS declares normal traffic status.
  7. Confirm location with cross street and hundred-block number, and use words twice when reporting important information.
  8. Identify county of occurrence for rural county roads and highways, and lesser-known locations.
  9. Keep transmissions brief and to the point to allow other stations to report.
  10. Report conditions, incidents and information to NCS that can be relayed to Clay and Platte county Emergency Management teams. Examples not limited to:

                  1.   Traffic signals out

2.      Power lines down especially over roadways

3.      Reportable tree, building damage

4.      Injuries to public

5.      Conditions that are safety hazard to public (Winter hazards also)

6.      Flash flooding-standing high water over roadways

7.      Large rainfall/snow amounts.  Rainfall/snow rate per hour if known





  1. When informed by NCS, weak signal stations shall remain off the air until signal is useable copy.  (Boost power, change location)  Weak signal stations will use very brief transmissions (use call sign and general location only) to test until NCS can copy.
  2. DO NOT repeat from second hand sources (Radio –TV)
  3. Follow guidelines as published in Deployment Manual North ARES_2015
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