The Elmore County Amateur Radio Club will begin the first in a series of free ham radio classes starting today, Jan. 18.
Classes are held from 7 to 9 p.m. Fridays at the Elmore County Emergency Services building on East 8th North Street.
"Immediately following a disaster, amateur radio, more commonly known as ham radio, is the only form of communication for the first couple of hours," said John Holwege, Elmore County amateur radio emergency services coordinator. "Ham radio operators are essential to emergency communications and providing a public service during times of disaster."
In addition, it's a great hobby for the whole family, Holwege said. Even those as young as 10 years old have earned their ham radio license.
While the classes are free, students are required to purchase a study manual as well as the testing fees, which cost about $45 total. The training prepares students for Federal Communications Commission technician licensing, allowing them to broadcast on high frequencies as well as very high frequencies and ultra high frequencies.
For more information on the classes, call Bill Bradshaw at 591-0539.