Coast Guard tests communication equipment during Cascadia Rising exercise

Chief Petty Officer Mark Bigsby, an information systems technician from Coast Guard Base Seattle, operates a deployable contigency communications system near Ellensburg, Wash., as part of the Cascadia Rising Exercise, June 7, 2016. The geographic scope of the exercise provides an opportunity to test contingency response capabilities across the Pacific Northwest. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Marshall Wilson.

Chief Petty Officer Mark Bigsby from Coast Guard Base Seattle, operates a deployable contigency communications system near Ellensburg, Wash. June 7, 2016.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Marshall Wilson.

Ellensburg, Wash. – Seattle-based Coast Guardsmen successfully tested deployable contingency communications systems during Cascadia Rising 2016 exercise, Tuesday near Ellensburg.

Communications experts were able to send email and communicate outside the impacted area via computer and phone line.

Specific systems tested included an internet wireless network VHF-FM trucked system, used to communicate with Rescue Coordination Center Seattle; Satellite phones used to communicate with Coast Guard command centers in Seattle, Astoria, Oregon and North Bend, Oregon; and High Frequency-ALE radio communication with the National Law Enforcement Communications Center in Orlando, Florida.

Additional tests were conducted with FEMA and State emergency operations centers on traditional HF radios. Communications experts will be traveling to North Bend and testing the DCCS and multiple antennas to communicate with these entities on traditional HF radios.

One of the primary goals is for the Coast Guard to test its ability to effectively communicate within its own organization as well as conduct interoperability with our critical partners during a disaster event that is predicted to damage the communications infrastructure along the entire West Coast.

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