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MEMPHIS, Tenn. – You never know when severe weather or a natural disaster could hit the our area. This weekend, hundreds of Mid-Southerners worked to make sure they were prepared just in case.

“Communication is the most critical piece when there is a disaster. You have to be able to communicate and get supplies in. Know the health and safety of your people, that`s paramount,” said ham radio operator Barry Pilkinton.

This weekend, operators are all over the country hit radio airwaves at the same time, hoping to connect with others. But they didn’t do it by plugging in to any sockets; they used battery power, antennas and satellites.

“You always need one more line of communication when there is a disaster. Ham radio can be that additional line. It is slower, yes, but at least they can get through,” said operator and trainer Joe Lowenthal.

Barry Pilkinton just received his amateur radio license about a month ago, but he says after working with other operators this weekend he feels more prepared to help out if a tragedy strikes.

“I’m much more comfortable. During field day you learn what channels you can operate on,” said Pilkinton.

There is an estimated 1,700 ham radio operators in the Mid-South.