The RACES is a standby radio service provided for in part 97.407 of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules and regulations governing amateur radio in the United States. When so activated, the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service consist of those amateur radio operators who have previously registered with State and local governments to provide emergency radio communications for them in times of emergency. Other amateur radio operations might be suspended and operations under the RACES rules might be restricted to certain frequencies within the amateur radio bands.
In addition to wartime communications, operations under the RACES rules can provide or supplement communications during emergencies where normal communication systems have sustained damage. It may be used in a wide variety of situations, including natural disasters, technological disasters, nuclear accidents, nuclear attack, terrorist incidents, and bomb threats.
York County's RACES radio operators provide redundant (back-up) communications during large scale emergency and/or disasters, throughout the Community, the Emergency Operations Center and Shelters as necessary. If you are currently an amateur radio operator and would like to join the York County Department of Fire and Life Safety RACES group, you can find them on the Yorktown-Poquoson ARES Net, Mondays at 8 p.m. on 146.670 MHz (SIMPLEX), if you are not an amateur radio operator, but would like to become an amateur radio operator Email RACES.