Radio hams keep Civil Defence in touch

6:49 pm on 23 February 2011

A small team of amateur radio operators are keeping the lines of communication open in earthquake-hit areas of Christchurch.

The head of the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications team, Richard Smart, says 10 amateurs are using their two emergency broadcast vans to keep rescue teams and Civil Defence staff in touch.

He says one is at a major welfare centre providing portable communication so they can talk to Civil Defence and the other vehicle is en route to assist search and rescue teams in an area where communication is poor.

Mr Smart says amateur radio operators from around the country are volunteering to help out and others are sending updates on the disaster to families of people in Christchurch who are overseas.