Radio Operations


To keep the radios charged and ready for transmission, the manufacturer has recommended that when storing the radio it should be turned off and placed inside the battery charger. Please check your radio battery at least once a month for signs of leakage (e.g., prior to the monthly radio check). If the battery is dead or appears to be malfunctioning, contact the Emergency Coordinator Assistant.

Activating the Network

Upon activation of the Mrak Hall Net, users should turn on their radios. The following events will trigger the activation of Mrak Hall Net:

  1. The fire alarm sounds;
  2. An email is received from the Mrak Coordinators listserv informing members that the Net is being activated; or
  3. A call is received from an Emergency Coordinator requesting activation of the network.

In the event of a bomb threat in Mrak Hall, network users will adhere to campus police recommendation and turn off their radios and cell phones while in or near the building.


Radio operators should always inspect their radios before attempting transmissions.

  1. Visually inspect the radio for any cracks or damaged parts.
  2. Check to see that the battery is charged.
  3. Set the frequency channel to the one designated by the Net Leader. The Mrak Hall primary frequency channel is 5; the secondary channels are 7 and 9. Leave your radio set to channel 5 as the default.
  4. Turn the radio on by turning the volume knob to the right. A good starting point is to twist the knob indicator so that it points to the printed “Vol” text on your radio. If your volume is set too low, your transmission will be too faint; too high, and your transmission could get distorted.
  5. Hold the radio with the antenna pointing up. The radio signal disperses in a hemisphere centered on the top of the antennae, so avoid directing the antenna sideways, towards the ground, or towards a mass of concrete or steel. If there is interference, try walking to a window or away from a thick wall.

Sending Messages

  1. Listen before you transmit; someone else might be using the channel.
  2. Consider a concise way to phrase your thoughts.
  3. Press the “Press To Talk” (PTT) switch (the top-most bumpy rectangular button), and wait for a moment while your radio accesses the network.
  4. With the radio about 4-6 inches from your mouth, speak clearly at a moderate speed and volume level.
  5. State your first name as well as your unit name and/or floor number.
  6. Use brief statements; if your message is long, break it into short sentences.
  7. Be prepared to write down important messages so that the other user will not need to retransmit the message. Coordinators should store a pen or pencil and stiff-backed notepad in their assigned backpacks.

Message Security

Mrak Hall Net is not a secure network. Since anyone could be listening to your transmissions, please do not communicate any sensitive information over the radio. If you believe a non-Mrak user is listening in, or trying to transmit on the network frequency channel, notify the Net Leader. The Net Leader will then either direct the intruder to leave the network or move the network to a backup frequency channel.

If you should lose possession of your radio at any time, please notify your floor coordinator immediately, or contact the Emergency Coordinator Assistant.