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Rumor Control: DoD not shutting off power grid, but you should join MARS!

We are seeing some inaccurate stories floating around that may be getting people needlessly panicked.

First, let’s cover what’s true.  The military is currently conducting a three-day exercise to test the interoperability of the Military Affiliate Radio System (MARS). You can read more about that exercise here.

However, the DoD absolutely has no authority to “take down” the civilian power grid during this exercise. There is no plan to disable anybody’s electricity.

The MARS system relies on volunteer amateur radio operators around the country who are able to stand up an ad hoc long-range telecommunications network that does not rely on any existing commercial infrastructure. Thus, the hypothetical scenarios for which they train are rather scary, given that their services would be most useful in a crisis (be it natural or otherwise).

If we’ve got your attention, and you are a radio operator looking for a great volunteer opportunity that promotes national security, we recommend you look into joining MARS at one of these links:

Army MARS membership information

Air Force MARS membership information

The story linked below from WREG provides some clarity on the exercise mentioned above.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A video claiming that the national power grid will soon go out for several days is causing panic on social media. The video warns that the Department of Defense will be using an electromagnetic pulse to shutdown the power grid … Read more at source…

image courtesy of wreg.com

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