SAN LEANDRO -- The public is invited to see how local radio communications are designed to work in an emergency at Field Day, a national disaster response drill, on Saturday at the San Leandro Marina.
The Alameda County Sheriff's Office's mobile Comm Van will join the event to show residents how to use various radio technologies that keep information flowing during a disaster, when traditional lines of communication are damaged or overwhelmed by traffic.
During the nationwide exercise, volunteer radio operators across the country compete for points by making contact with other radio stations. The event gives disaster response teams practice for an actual emergency.
"It's a fun feeling to reach stations in Alaska, Oklahoma, even Hawaii," Sheriff's Communications Team member Dan Goldstein said in a statement. "But the heart of the exercise is to practice using your radio to contact someone outside the disaster area who might be able to send aid."
Team membership is open to the public for anyone able to pass a background check. Members get free training and a uniform allowance for their service.
The drill runs from 11 a.m. Saturday to 11 a.m. Sunday, and the public may visit the Comm Van at any time during the event to talk to radio operators and see them work, Goldstein said.
The San Leandro Marina is located at 40 Mulford Point Drive in San Leandro.