Tactical Calls by Larry Fields, WD8LF
Why Tactical Calls
The Tactical Call sign is used
to identify a location or function during an event regardless of who is
operating. You don’t need to know the
Amateur Call or the name of the individual.
confusion at shift
change or when an operator takes a break, i.e. the call is the same no
who the operator is.
should be used
for all Emergency Nets when there are more than three participants and
Public Service events.
The Net Control
assign the tactical Call to be used. The call will be unique to the
location or function of the
Some Samples of Tactical Calls
Net for the Net Control Station
General for Akron General
City for Akron City Hospital
EOC for the Emergency
Red Cross for the Summit County Chapter
These are just a few. Tactical calls should be pre-assigned to
some of the more common places we’ll probably cover.
Using Tactical Calls
Initiating a call: “Net, City” or just plain “City”
Net answers go ahead “City”
If you had special traffic you would say: “City, emergency” or
Net will answer “City go ahead with emergency”
Notice how smooth it went and how much info was conveyed in
If you had traffic for “General” you would say: “City with
routine for General”
Net would then come back with: “City permission to go direct
After the Exchange is Finished
After all the traffic has been passed and you are ready to
sign off, you will say: “WD8ITF, City
clear”. This will alert the NCS that you are done and that the
frequency is now open again. You also meet one of the FCC requirements
for identifying with your Amateur Call.
You still have to meet FCC requirements about using your
You are required to give your call at the end of an exchange as shown
above or every ten minutes if the exchange lasts that long.
As you can see Tactical Calls can be very helpful when you are
working with many stations. This can
enhance Emergency Communications greatly and hopefully eliminate
confusion. I know I have problems trying to keep call signs straight as
to who it is and what they are doing. By using the Tactical Call it has
at least made operating NCS easier.