Has your scanner ever helped you?

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Bullmax

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London, ON
Just wondering if anyone has ever had a call that you were able to help yourself or someone, avoid a traffic jam etc..

Would like to hear any stories if anyone has any.
 

mciupa

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Rule #1 when mobile in the GTA. Monitor the GO Transit buses.
Those guys always offer diversion routes to their fellow drivers to avoid delays on their routes.

West has the QEW
Central has the DVP
and East has the 401 through Scarborough to Durham Region, were the only thing that moves is your gas gauge. :roll:
 

SuperTex

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Barrie, Ontario
Just wondering if anyone has ever had a call that you were able to help yourself or someone, avoid a traffic jam etc..

Would like to hear any stories if anyone has any.
I drove / owned taxi for 12 years. I always had at least one handheld in my car. I monitored the local police freq, among other things. I got a little background information numerous times in advance of picking up fares... and my tips jar got fuller because people sometimes loved hearing the scanners and thought it was cool. That and the constant offers of $10 to talk on the taxi two way...
 

Forts

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I've used mine many times to avoid traffic problems. Not to mention hearing the odd speed trap being set up :)
 

unlisted

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Yup, has helped me countless times when going to a fire call- I can monitor where I should approach from, if the fire is getting better/worse, where to stage, etc.. (my portable radio also helps if I remember it) lol

Oh and traffic.. so many times..
 

Jammin_Jay

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I found mine very useful when there is a accident on Hwy 401, and traffic is rerouted down a side road or service road. And knowing this in advance got off on the next exit, only to see traffic stuck at a stand still , even people backing up in reverse off an exit, while i glided by on the side, going 80 km/h watching the traffic jam on the side road from a distance, and the emergency vehicles, on the hwy. Its great to know , especially if the next exit is 10 km away, and you have a possibility of being stuck, not knowing. How many people do u know in that situation, wish they new something in advance on the hwy while driving.

Even getting it before 680 news does or other traffic reports, can save minutes, and you can plan your detour before you see the many brake lights ahead.

I find it useful with the volume of traffic especially on long weekends , like this weekend, when travelling ontario highways.
 
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rbecker1963

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As a Towing Dispatcher, the scanner really helps me with anticipating Police calls like Impounds and Accidents. It really is one of my primary tools and you could say that it is not a hobby for me, but rather part of the job. In the off season (Oct-Apr) I work from home and now thanks to RR hosting my live feed, I will be able to monitor my own scanner feed when I start having to work out of the shop.

Ray
 

Command30

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One day heading north the 400 completely closed about 10 km ahead of me due to a crash.. about 3 minutes later I would have been stranded on a closed highway!

Day-to-day, I monitor the airport (YYZ/GTAA) frequencies as it provides useful and relevant info for my job. Whenever one of our aircraft is involved with an incident or malfunction, the radio chatter provides an accurate picture of stress levels and other operational considerations that aren't always straightforward or described. Beneficial for investigative purposes.
 

exkalibur

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Back when I was an alarm dispatcher for a security company, whenever I dispatched the Police to a call along with one of our mobile units, it was always helpful to tell the mobile car if they're going to be waiting awhile for the Police.
 

VA3SOM

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me knowing where all the Hotbox detectors are (mile markers) i can use mine to track my train

i also use my scanner to monitor security when im transit fanning or elevator fanning
 

JamesPrine

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I used to live on Chef Menteur Highway in New Orleans East back in the late '70s. At the time, I was a Deputy Sheriff in St. Bermard Parish. Mr roommate was the manager of a Burger King at the corner of Chef Highway at Read Boulevard. One afternoon, an irate customer stabbed her in the stomach with a large, sharpened screwdriver.

I heard the call go out on my radio, and they transmitted a description of the perpetrator and his vehicle, which I discovered was coming my way. I got into my POV and saw him coming at me, and called it in on my radio; several NOPD units joined in and we got him after a very short pursuit.

He came out gesturing with the bloody screwdriver but did not like the looks of my Smith & Wesson Model 29 .44 Magnum revolver aimed at his chest, so he surrendered quickly.

He had blood all over him and claimed that he'd done it shaving <shaking head>.

My roommate did fine and she refused to press charges on that jackass.

Another time I heard the call of a Signal 20-I, possible 20-F, (possible fatality in a traffic accident) concerning a motorcyclist and a large gravel truck very close by. No emergency units were available, and I was an EMT at the time, so I responded in my personal vehicle.

The biker was a mess, and he was bleeding to death, but I kept him going until other units got there and assisted. He made it, survived with some *extensive* plastic surgery to repair his shattered face, and I encountered him while shopping some time later and he remembered me and couldn't thank me enough for "saving him" <g>.

Ah, the good old days...
 

EJB

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Downtown Hamilton
It has helped me in a lot of ways.

One recent story:

My wife was out for a '***' and she noticed what looked like a fight in the apartment building behind ours.
She called the police and we heard the call come thru on my scanner.

The cops went to the building in question and to the apartment and wanted to speak to the person who called it in. At that moment, one of my cats had to use the litter box, this cat does not use the litter well (she doesnt bury her poops) and it STANK!

When we heard that the cop wanted to speak to her I ran to clean the litter box and my wife fabreezed the apartment, also a good thing because my neighbours are chronic dope smokers and the smell wafts to our apartment.
 

bob_leach_3

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Ashmore/Charleston, IL
From IL, US here...helped me avoid a car-vs-tractor accident on the way to work once. I would have been late for sure if I hadn't taken another route. Someone had run into a sweeper mounted on the back of a tractor near the landfill...put a huge dent in it lol. I think it's still in service.
 

roots

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QC, Canada
I always have my scanner with me....

I always listen to City Bus to be aware of traffic and different route...
Local & Highway police for speedtrap or traffic also...
City worker....
 

greenhorn123

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Sarnia Ont.
My scanner has saved hundreds of minutes of wasteful time. I drive transport from Sarnia to Toronto every weekday. Knowing whats happening on average 1 hour ahead of me allows me to redirect if needed. Also, the winter road reports are a great bonus if you know how to understand all the rsg/rsl stuff.

In the truck I have a PRO96 and at home a 396 (never been able to figure this one all out so it just monitors OPS08,MTO)
 

SCPD

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When I was a high schooler, 30 plus years ago, I learned through my 10 channel Regency crystal controlled scanner that the local police were investigating a burglary ring that had its people pose as survey takers, asking housewives if they could come into their house for a few moments. What they did once inside the house was case the joint for valuables to snatch at a later date. As I returned home from school one afternoon, there was a guy with a clipboard talking with my mother outside my front door. I never said a word to the guy, perhaps it was just the suspicious look I gave him, but he decided to beat a hasty retreat. As the guy is scurrying off I tell my mom to call the police and tell them there's a burglary suspect in the neighborhood. I then follow the guy for two blocks (making sure he dosn't see me following him). The guy jumps into the passenger side of a VW van which roars off. By this time a cop is at my house, so I give him a description of the guy, the van, and a partial plate. Needless to say, the burglaries stopped soon after. And all because one day I heard two cops talking about the burglary ring on a secondary channel. Makes you sometimes wonder why all the current rage for encryption. In this case my eavesdropping actually helped the cops.

Dave
KA6TJF
 

VA3SOM

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wherever i go i always have a Transit Agency in my scanner they are the best for detour information

Hotbox Detectors (where my train is)
 

Don_Burke

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Southeastern Virginia
Just wondering if anyone has ever had a call that you were able to help yourself or someone, avoid a traffic jam etc..

Would like to hear any stories if anyone has any.
I work as a traffic reporter. The scanners help me at least a couple of times a day, often several times an hour.
 

robertmac

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absolutely

Which is why it is really, really, unfortunate that most PSA are going encrypted. Have avoided a lot of MVCs, fire, hazardous waste spills, etc.. Monitoring ham radio 6 years ago, stayed over in Red Deer as ARES was acitvated in Red Deer because Highway 2 was closed south of Red Deer to Calgary. The reports were very good on the Saturday, but absent on Sunday. In fact, there was a lack of any radio type of communication on Sunday. It is unfortuante that the ham radio operators did not do much reporting on the Sunday.

Calgary can grid lock very fast in the winter. In 2009 November there was a freezing rain, followed by snow storm hit Calgary. Unfortunately, Calgary Transit is using cellphones, CPS used CAD so there was little reporting from emergency services. Ham radio was dead, nothing activated. So it was drive by the seat of your pants and play follow the leader. Except it went around in circles. Of course, this happened on a Friday afternoon, so City Hall was closed [seemed like it was]. Ooops, better stop because this is an example of when a scanner DID NOT HELP. Although it should have.
 
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