Tropical Storm Elsa…G.I. JOE style!

While it looks like Elsa (as of the 11:00 a.m. advisory on July 5) is going to provide us with a little rain but otherwise leave us alone, it is a good time, if you haven’t already done so, to review your hurricane preparedness. One thing that many folks don’t think about until it’s already raining is ensuring they have gas for their generator (if they have one). Another is a stock of non-perishable food and a water supply.

From a communications standpoint, it’s wise to make sure your HT batteries are in good shape for both your primary and (if you have one) your secondary. Also, make sure you’re familiar with repeaters in the Lakeland area that might be used in an emergency:

K4LKL (LARC Repeater) 146.685 (-600, PL 127.3)

KD4EFM (SARNET) 442.275 (+5.0, PL 82.5)

NI4CE (“The Big Stick”) 442.825 (+5.0, PL 100.0)

WC4PEM (Polk Emergency Management) 443.900 (+5.0, PL 127.3)

National Simplex Calling Frequency 146.52

Also, know how to program your radio without a computer…one day you might have to.

It would also be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the National Hurricane Center website ( as well as Polk Ares (

Hopefully we won’t have to use any of this information to deal with a widespread emergency, but as G.I. Joe says…”Knowing is half the battle!” 🙂