Radio Amateurs Help Air Ambulance

Peru’s Radio Club Peruano (RCP) reports that Guillermo Guerra, OA4DTU/XQ3SA, and the Peruvian Relief Net assisted an air ambulance en route to Easter Island on July 9 after its satellite communication equipment failed. The aircraft was about 1,000 nautical miles from the continent, so the pilot tuned to the Peruvian Relief Net on 7100 kHz.

Net control station OA4DTU and Giancarlo Passalacqua, OA4DSN, were still on frequency, and communication was established with the aircraft. The pilot detailed its tenuous connection and requested support to communicate via telephone with Ocean Air Control, a service of the Directorate General of Aeronautics of Chile, which watches over 32 million square kilometers of air space off the Chilean coast in the Pacific.

Authorities were already on alert for the aircraft because of the communication loss, plus the HF at the Easter Island tower was inoperative. About 10 phone calls were made to point out the aircraft’s position and route schedule, as well as any additional information needed. Other hams in Peru were listening in and standing by.

Guerra remained in contact with the aircraft until he was sure that it would reach its destination. At approximately 2330 UTC, the pilot reported making VHF contact with the Easter Island control tower for landing instructions. — Thanks to Radio Club Peruano





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