Date: May 2022
In late March 2022, wildfires erupted in the Wears Valley / Seymour area of eastern Tennessee. A week later the fires were under control, but had already burned 3500 acres and destroyed or severely damaged 221 structures. During the overnight hours of March 31st, 90+ mph winds knocked down a 130-foot communications tower along the Chilhowee Mountain ridgeline, 12 miles southwest of Wears Valley, leaving the area without any emergency communications capability.
This grant will allow the East Tennessee Repeater Association to put up a new tower and restore the 2-meter, 6-meter, and 70-cm voice repeaters, as well as the 2-meter APRS digipeater. The tower will also support three EMS repeaters and there is an opportunity to add a fire service radio as well.