All posts by Emil

BARC Participates in JOTA 2017

Belize City

October 22, 2017


Members of the Belize Amateur Radio Club (BARC) have participated in JOTA/JOTI 2017 alongside a group of scouts eager to communicate over the air on the ham bands.

JOTA/JOTI means Jamboree Over the Air/Jamboree Over the Internet. It is an annual event held on the third weekend of October and is seen as one of the Scouts1largest scouting activity of the year. During the event, scouts from all over the globe gather in their respective troops to communicate with other scouts using radio and the internet. The communication exchanges during the two-day event helps to promote peace and understanding among mankind.

The venue for this year’s activity was the Scouts Association Headquarters in Belize City. There, BARC participants assisted by providing ham radio equipment and communications know-how to the young scouts. Successful over-the-air ham radio contacts were made with various countries in the region including: Mexico, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic and the USA.

BARC members also provided digital support to the technologicallyScouts2 inclined scouts by introducing them to Echolink. Echolink is an internet communications tool that allows registered ham radio operators to communicate with each other via voice and chat.

At the end of the event, administrative officers of Scouts Belize and members of the Belize Amateur Radio Club agreed that there is plenty of room for ham radio development and cooperation between the two institutions.

Specific areas of cooperation discussed included training for scouts who can serve Belize as emergency communicators if there is a collapse of the normal communications infrastructure; as recent events in the Caribbean have demonstrated.


Tropical Storm Harvey Watch


August 18, 2017
For: Immediate Release

The Belize Amateur Radio Club (BARC) has started to monitor the movement of Tropical Storm Harvey as it makes its way across the Caribbean Sea. Meteorological forecasts indicate a storm path directly to Belize.

Storms such as Harvey may disrupt normal communications by uprooting electrical poles,folding over radio towers and damaging antennae used by telecommunications companies. The loss of electricity and normal communications may cripple communities and individuals if they are not able to relay critical information.

Emergency two-way communications, such as those provided by BARC members ( who are also called Ham Radio Operators), may become vital following the passage of a powerful storm. BARC members have therefore trained and stand ready to assist if called upon to provide emergency radio communications.

At the announcement of an imminent landfall of TS Harvey by the Meteorological and National Emergency Managers, BARC will proceed to use the frequencies of 7.177 MHz and 147.000 to relay emergency messages within Belize. We will also use internationally allocated ham radio frequencies to relay emergency traffic.

Attached below are additional radio frequencies used by emergency radio organizations to assist in humanitarian relief efforts:

Belize Emergency Frequencies
7.000 MHz National Disaster Response Frequency

7.177 MHz Belize Amateur Radio Club Net
144.000 MHz Disaster response
150.750 MHz NEMO Belize Disaster Response
156.800 MHz Maritime Guard Band Ch16

Worldwide Emergency Frequencies and Websites
3.815 MHz Caribbean Emergency & Weather Net
14.265 MHz Salvation Army Network
14.325 MHz Hurricane Watch Net

For additional information kindly contact:
Emil Rodriguez
Belize Amateur Radio Club


Engineering Students in Belize Receive Introduction to Ham Radio

Engineering Students at the University of Belize have been given an Introduction to Amateur Radio by members of the Belize Amateur Radio Club.

The introduction was held at the University of Belize (UB) Engineering Department in Belize City and included a summary of BARC´s educational goals, a short video, a lesson on ham radio basics (such as propagation and the radio frequency spectrum) and a question-and-answer session.

BARC President Emil Rodriguez, V31ER, encouraged the young students to grasp the opportunities that Amateur Radio offers to expand their skills in their field of study, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering Technologies.

The introduction represents the first step towards establishing a partnership between BARC and the UB Engineering Department. It is envisioned that through this partnership students will learn specific skills that include building simple antennae, exploring electronic circuits, practicing voice procedures, and learning theory necessary to obtain their ham radio licenses.

Following the BARC Ham Radio introduction, students and staff members expressed their intention to establish a UB Amateur Radio Club shortly.

The establishment of a permanent Ham Radio station at the UB Engineering Department would be a first and could greatly enhance the educational capacity of the institution. It would also allow students to contribute to their community by engaging in emergency radio communications during hurricanes that affect Belize.


BARC Certificate 2017 features Altun Ha

Members of the Belize Amateur Radio Club will be pleased when they receive their 2017 certificate that features the ancient Mayan ruins at Altun Ha.

Altun Ha is one of Belize´s top tourist destinations and the site offers a unique insight into the Mayas who occupied that area for many centuries; from about B.C. 900 to A.D. 1000.

The ruins are located on the north-central coastal plain of Belize about 30 miles (50km) north of Belize City and about 6 miles (10km) west of the shore of the Caribbean Sea. While the site was in existence for centuries, it did not come to the attention of archaeologists until 1963. Since then it has come under official management and regular tours are available to the adventurous at heart.

The BARC Membership Certificate for 2017 features the largest of Altun Ha’s temple-pyramids, which is the “Temple of the Masonry Altars”. It rises about 54 feet (16 m) high.

Along with the certificate, full members will also receive an official BARC t-shirt.