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RADIO HAMS CALLED IN TO EASE MILLENNIUM BUG PROBLEMS

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A team of amateur radio enthusiasts is on standby to help out Fife Council on new year's eve in the event of millen...
A team of amateur radio enthusiasts is on standby to help out Fife Council on new year's eve in the event of millennium bug problems, reported Scotland on Sunday (p5).

Emergency planners are concerned that telephone lines could be jammed for up to four hours after midnight on January 1, simply because more people than ever will want to wish each other a happy new year.

Emergency services from the police to councils have a network of radio transmitters to make sure they can communicate should the worst happen.

Fife has enlisted the services of 35 radio hams who will help out should the council's radio system fall victim to the computer bug.

The council's emergency planning officer, Gordon Jacobs, said: 'We are not saying the worst will happen but we are not burying our heads in the sand either.'

Stan Yates, emergency planning officer for Scottish Borders Council, sadi: 'Phones will not work for approximately two hours after the millennium. I am putting radios out so emergency staff can communicate after midnight.'

A spokesman for the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities said councils north of the border were showing a strong commitment to addressing the problems that could arise on 1 January 2000.

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