COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Amateur radio operators around the country held their annual field day Sunday. It was a 24-hour competition where local ham radio groups set up their equipment to try to communicate with other teams from across North America.

Using off-the-grid energy and communication systems that operate independently, hams can provide regional communication in case everything else goes down.

“It is absolutely vital that the amateur radio community continues to practice like we’re doing today, so that if we’re ever needed by our community, we can step up and help,” Village 7 Amateur Radio Club vice president Doug Ducote said.

Ducote said the club reached more than 100 teams across the U.S.