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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 07-17-2013, 12:35 PM
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Default Canada: Cop lingo losing its mystique? Police services debate 10-codes vs. plain Engl

While there may have been concerns in the past about scanner enthusiasts listening in on sensitive calls, encrypted radio technology now blocks transmissions from being picked up by outsiders, those pushing for the changes say.

Further, they say, the special cop lingo has lost a lot of its mystique as translations for 10-codes can easily be found online.

Corriveau warned in her column that as RCMP members travel from one province to another, the lack of standardized 10-codes “may eventually jeopardize their safety and that of the public.”

“The RCMP and other police agencies should evaluate the pros and cons of dropping 10-codes,” she said. “Agencies could maintain between five and 10 radio codes, such as 10-4, which has the same meaning worldwide. More than 10 would defeat the purpose.”

http://www.windsorstar.com/news/nati...551/story.html
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Old 07-17-2013, 1:21 PM
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Quote:
such as 10-4, which has the same meaning worldwide.
Oh, really?

I know of it having at least 3 meanings in normal use, in a single county. I've even seen all 3 used in the same conversation.
  1. Acknowledgement - the widely common actual meaning
  2. As a question for "did/do you copy/understand/hear me?"
  3. Answering Affirmative or Yes

And that's not counting the numerous other meanings I've seen...
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Old 07-17-2013, 1:24 PM
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That's a big 10-4
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Old 07-17-2013, 3:34 PM
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Way overdue. And while we're at it, could we all please standardize on the NATO phonetics alphabet so that we don't have to guess at what they're saying over the air?
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Old 07-17-2013, 3:54 PM
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Since we are talking about radio communication, not military operations, maybe the standard should be the ITU phonetic alphabet. (it is surprisingly similar and ITU have been a standards setting organization since Long before NATO).
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Old 07-17-2013, 4:38 PM
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Most departments still use the Military Alphabet and NATO codes as well as the 10 code system. However with encryption becoming a more popular fad in radio systems, particularly trunked radio systems, the use of these ( I SPECULATE) will decrease and plain english will still prevail. Still even in most, if not all police academies, still teach the NATO codes/Military Alphabet and the 10 code system to there new recruits. That being said they will still continue to use them.
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Old 07-17-2013, 6:14 PM
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In Miami-Dade County, FL, they use Q-signals instead of 10 codes.
Instead of saying 10-4, they say QSL.
They use QSK for go ahead and QTH for location QRM for interference and some others that are familiar to those who are hams. You hear QRU a lot too for clear/ no warrants/ok. They also use some other numeric codes.

Last edited by rapidcharger; 07-17-2013 at 6:19 PM..
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Old 07-17-2013, 6:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnls7424 View Post
Most departments still use the Military Alphabet and NATO codes as well as the 10 code system. ... Still even in most, if not all police academies, still teach the NATO codes/Military Alphabet and the 10 code system to there new recruits. That being said they will still continue to use them.
Just curious about your data source for "most departments" ..."most if not all police academies"
I am not arguing the point, I just am interested in where this observation comes from?
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Old 07-17-2013, 7:51 PM
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I know your talking about Canada, but in the US, NIMS requires plain talk for TAC COMS mutual aid operations and strongly suggest agencies abandon all codes.

Agencies who do not use plain talk as a part of their daily ops will struggle during disasters when operating during mutual aid tac com.

Most state regions in the US now have trained COM L leaders who are hopefully guiding their local agencies away from codes to plain talk.

Our police, fire, EMS adopted plain talk in 1986. 10 codes are cave man days, and time consuming for new employees. I have a study conducted for California Highway Patrol by Stanford ( I think) around 1976 that concluded pain talk was actually faster to use and process than 10 codes.

However, many law enforcement agencies refuse to change. It has taken police 30 years to go from a 38 wheel gun to a semi auto, as well as carrying a rifle in addition to a shotgun.

Although the study in 1976 showed that plain talk was better than codes, NIMS encourages plain talk, agencies still refuse to change tradition.

Last edited by dyersburg911; 07-17-2013 at 8:06 PM..
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Old 07-17-2013, 9:34 PM
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Default Canada: Cop lingo losing its mystique? Police services debate 10-codes vs. plai

NYPD and FDNY/EMS (New York City) all have different 10 codes and there is no sign of them going to plain language.
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Old 07-17-2013, 9:39 PM
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And "interoperability" is the new buzz word like "moving forward". But is it really if everyone uses different LINGO?
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n2ops View Post
While there may have been concerns in the past about scanner enthusiasts listening in on sensitive calls, encrypted radio technology now blocks transmissions from being picked up by outsiders, those pushing for the changes say.
Police 10 codes were never meant to "prevent unauthorized listeners from decoding messages". They were used for brevity and were also useful in the early days of radio when primitive equipment resulted in transmissions which were not very clear.

Quote:
Further, they say, the special cop lingo has lost a lot of its mystique as translations for 10-codes can easily be found online.
Police 10 codes were always readily available, long before there were computers. I received a copy from a deputy when I began monitoring in the 1960s.

Quote:
10-4, which has the same meaning worldwide.
A "10-4" in Columbus Ohio / Franklin County is a non-injury vehicle crash. It is rarely used as an acknowledgment in Ohio.

With the advances in radio technology and due to the variations from one jurisdiction to another and with the potential for confusion I don't think they should be used at all.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:55 PM
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Default 10 Codes

Listen to Columbus Ohio Police, they never say 10-4 as acknowledge, they say "copy" and have a long list of 10 codes they use, and never use "foxtrot" for a firearm. they have a 10 code for that, have to look online for their 10 codes they use.
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Old 07-18-2013, 12:14 AM
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The FD here got off 10-codes years ago and everything's been much simpler and straight forward.

The PD seems to be leaning that way too...
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Old 07-18-2013, 7:20 AM
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During the VietNam war, on the USAF Security Police radio 10-9 was OK and 10-4 was repeat. Go figure!
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Old 07-18-2013, 10:34 AM
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It's funny that I hear just as many conversations where they don't say the "10" (or 11) when using the code. "I'm 97" or "Can you run 28s and 29s on ...". And yes there are a few instances where they use "copy that" or some other term which is still SLANG.
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Old 07-18-2013, 12:59 PM
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One of the local PDs here that is very proactive started using
cleartext for most of its communications back in 2007.
Here is part of a letter that was sent out to the rank
and file back then to alert them to the change (dept name redacted):

Quote:
In February of 2006, The National Incident Management System (NIMS) Integration Center sent out a bulletin requiring Plain English be used for multi-agency events, such as a major disaster. Beginning October 2006, federal preparedness grant funding was contingent on the use of common terminology in incidents requiring assistance from responders from other agencies and jurisdictions.

Beginning January 1, 2007, the Police Department will be converting from the current 10-codes to ClearText (plain language) communication. This new protocol will assure compliance suggested by the National Incident Management System (NIMS). This new policy is a step toward ensuring that during multi-jurisdictional incidents or any other time other agencies must communicate through the radio system, everyone involved understands what is being communicated. The following codes and signals may still be utilized as necessary. <short list of codes>




For CAD purposes, when coding Incident Reports over the radio, you will utilize the alpha code and then say what the code means. An example would be “code A, report filed”.

All other radio communications will be conducted using plain language. In order to maintain brevity and professionalism on the radio, the department will be using the definitions already established on the current 10-code list. For example, under the new system, instead of using 10-38, the user would say, I’m stopping a vehicle at Hwy/Cross Street and then give the communicator the vehicle information.

Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call.
In the last 5-6 years this has worked well with this department along with their neighboring agencies. Less confusion.
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Old 07-18-2013, 1:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KE4ZNR View Post
In the last 5-6 years this has worked well with this department along with their neighboring agencies. Less confusion.
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Do you know if that has resulted in faster response times?
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Old 07-18-2013, 2:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rapidcharger View Post
Do you know if that has resulted in faster response times?
That is a good question...I will ask and try to find out...I do know it has kept confusion to a minimum considering that there used to be at least 3 different sets of codes/signals used by different agencies around this town (Town set of codes/signals/, County Sheriff had slightly different set and State Highway Patrol had yet another set of codes signals).

Let me see what I can find out.
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Old 07-18-2013, 10:33 PM
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The 10-codes varied greatly from one county to the next. For example, where I now live,"10-79" refers to a dead person. In my previous county, it referred to doing that which should not be done in the unit and/or while on duty.

In my current county, some of the peepz use modified words, such as "A-firm" (as opposed to "yes". I guess they think it is curte or something, but it really sounds bad. There are also a few who sound like CB'ers... dispatchers who say, "ya got walked on!".

With FM (analog or digital), signal clarity precludes the need for anything but plain language.
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