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About Us

Who/ What is WICEN

WICEN Bundaberg began in the 1970's when members of the Bundaberg Amateur Radio Club took over the communications role after Civil Defence was disbanded.
When an emergency occurs communications can be lost and our Radios, powered by 12volt batteries, remain the only form of communication.

Response to Emergency

WICEN Amateur Radio operators are activated all around the country. They are autonomous groups who forge partnerships with emergency agencies in each State. Regular training ensures our accredited operators can be relied on in an emergency.

We Are Volunteers

Our members volunteer their time to serve our local community.
The Bundaberg Amateur Radio Club funds WICEN and we currently have 12 club members actively serving as WICEN volunteers.

Our Aims

Our aim is to be prepared. We are part of the Bundaberg Regional Council Disaster Management Plan to provide Radio Communications between emergency and welfare services.
WICEN operators sit behind the highly trained SES & EMQ personnel, allowing them to do the life-saving work.

Equipment

With a mix of ICOM and YAESU radios we maintain a Base station plus 4 Portable Emergency Radio kits with field antennas.
Our radios have tri-band capabilities, that's HF, VHF and UFH so we're versatile.

Training Exercises

Exercises and Training are a vital part of our preparedness and we have a full calendar of training in radio operations and message handling.
Field exercises test our skills regularly so that we know the coverage area of our equipment around this large and geographically diverse region.

WICEN at Work

Ex1

VK4BRG [SK] & VK4UO

Training Exercise

"Testing the Club's portable station at a remote evacuation hall for Bundaberg Council's Disaster Plan"

Ex8

WICEN Bundy - Gayndah Exercise

VK4JRO & VK4FHAM with Council Disaster Coordinator

"Coordinated by the Police responsible for Disaster Management, we had a team in Gayndah using HF to pass messages to Bundaberg, to prove our capability."

Ex2

VK4FHAM, VK4ION & VK4FCCW

On Display

"We regularly attend expos to ensure the public is aware of our capabilities and hopefully to inspire some locals to join us."

Gallery & Information

Portable Station Case YAESU

Link

Portable Station

We have 3 Portable Emergency Amateur Radio Station timber cases.
Coated with marine varnish ready for floodboat or rain operations.
The shelf is removable and underneath is everything the operator needs to be self-sufficient.
An operator would take one of these stations, and together with the Antenna pack and their own personal supplies they are ready to be deployed with a minimum of fuss.
All that we require at the intended site is a 12volt battery which can be taken from a vehicle, boat or even ride-on mower.
We can be set up and ready to transmit in about 20 minutes.

Motorbike Trail Ride Exercise Our Volunteeres

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Comms in the Bush!

We provide comms for the Curtis Coast Trail Riders Club annual bush event. Usually held at 'Clarkeys' it's now moved to Ubobo.
The motorcycle club's UHF radios don't provide coverage in the mountainous area so our operators sit at critical points around the course to provide radio coverage.
It can be simply directing the sweep riders or competitors or calling for support vehicles when a breakdown occurs in the rugged terrain.
We camp for the weekend, it's not glamorous but it is fun!

Emergency Dipole Antenna ENVIS

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Emergency HF Antenna

This is our workhorse for HF emergency work.
It's a Near Vertical Incident Skywave (NVIS) antenna with radiation at a high angle so the major lobe is between 75 and 90 degrees to the earth's surface, in an omni-directional pattern.
It's NOT a long-distance antenna a distance, we aim for 100-400km but have tested up to 1600km.
We find it to be extremely reliable between 3.5Mhz (80m) and 7.3Mhz (40m) - perfect for WICEN use.
With acknowledgement to Bob Hejl W2IK for his initial research into this antenna & dedication to emergency comms.

Testing equipment in remote locations 5 NET

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Exercise 5 Net

As part of our Disaster planning for Council we set up stations in remote Evacuations Centres to test our equipment.
WICEN Members operated the base station as well as the four remote stations in a hook-up to prove communications.
Teams were at Boolboonda Hall, Goodnight Scrub Hall, Gin Gin Showgrounds and at Pacific Haven.
The Base station controlling the net was the Club's shack at SES HQ in Bundaberg.

Attending EXPOs Wartburg

Emergency Expo at Wartburg

We regularly attend expos to show the public what we can do.
Most people think radio is just CB, and they are amazed at just where we can send our transmissions.
We show remote communities how they can build their resistance for times of natural disaster.
It's also an encouragement for people to improve their mental health by undertaking study for a Radio Licence. Learning a new skill will keep your brain active!

Winfield Station VK4FCCW

The Story

We set up a WICEN Station at Winfield, with the help of Lorraine, VK4FCCW and David VK4KPM
The floods in 2013 cut off all communication for this small seaside community but now they are part of the WICEN network they will have a reliable link back to Bundaberg.

Contact Us

WICEN Bundaberg
PO Box 129
Bundaberg Qld 4670

Email:
deputycontroller@wicen-bundaberg.org.au
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