Australia Day Fun Run 2019

This the first event of what will be a busy year for WICEN Victoria.  The Rosebud Australia Day Fun Run is a great way to kick the new year for WICEN.  It’s a relatively simple event to ease our way into the new yea, consisting of a 10km run from Safety Beach to Rosebud Village Green, or the 5km run from Dromana to the Rosebud Village Green.  The event attracts hundreds of serious runners and thousands of casual runners and walkers.  It’s a 100% volunteer-run event, with funds raised from the day supporting local sporting and community groups whose members volunteer their time each year to run this fantastic event.

WICEN deployed ten operators across the length of the course.  Our role was to provide emergency and logistical radio communications. Radio traffic is generally light, and all operators could use a handheld radio to operate effectively, though a high gain antenna is recommended.  With a local repeater not being available due to technical issues with its recent relocation, a crossband repeater was established on one of the operator’s vehicles (2M in) using a UHF link frequency to the transmitter located at the McCrae Yacht Club.  One WICEN operator was located on a SES minibus which also serves as a sweep vehicle along the road. A mag mounted antenna was a must for improved communications with this station.

The serious runners completed the 10kms in just over 30 minutes and the majority of the final runners were all in within a few hours.  As the sweep passes our control points along the route, we progressively close those points, giving permission for those operators to close.  Some head for home after an early start (in position by 8am) while others come to the finish (Village Green) for a coffee and hamburger.  So why is this a good event to start the year off?  Well it’s a half day deployment, with a handheld (or two for a backup), minimal radio traffic and it’s relatively close for most attending operators (about an hour from home).  

WICEN Victoria’s next event is the Pajero Challenge in the Big River State Forest 9thand 10thFebruary, where we’ll be providing communications support over two days.  This will be a two night / three-day deployment with operators needing portable masts, beams, VHF, UHF and HF capability.   Many will be in areas only accessible by 4WD.  We’ll be operating for approximately 18hours and needing to be self-sufficient in the Victorian high country.  

WICEN is always looking for new operators to join us so if your interest please get in touch.  WICEN is a volunteer organisation that provides communication support to other emergency agencies under the Victorian Emergency Services Act.  We use these events as training exercises to hone and develop our members skills.