Something has gone terribly wrong. Normal ways of doing things are not working. The fastest way to turn an emergency into a full disaster is to lose communications.
Radio Amateurs understand emergencies. For over 100 years they have provided emergency communications for organisations and governments. When normal ways of communication fail or get overloaded Radio Amateurs are there.
HAMNET, the Emergency Communications division of the South African Radio League (SARL), provides communications for emergencies and can mobilise experienced communicators who with their own radio equipment will back up official channels or take over when all else fails.
The SARL represents Radio Amateurs in South Africa at all levels of Government and through the IARU at the International Telecommunications Union. Radio Amateurs or “Hams” use two-way radio communication to make contact with other radio amateurs all over the world. They are able to use satellites and on occasion speak with astronauts. Radio Hams can do this from home or while mobile in cars, boats or on foot.