Johnson County Passport System

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fwradio

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While listening to Hood County Fire today, I started hearing a blip of noise every 2 seconds. After plugging thta channel into my scanner w/LTRTrunk, I found it to be LTR Passport data. Doing some checking led me back to Johnson County's new radio system. They are going to use both of the frequencies from Hood County's fire channel (input and output) as output freqs on trunked repeaters in Cleburne. They were clobbering Hood County all day today.

Anyone have any ideas on why they would use those frequencies?
 

af5rn

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Yeah, I just now finally locked out Hood County fire here in Arlington too, because of that constant on-off keying. Bastards.

That frequency is also the output for Alvarado FD, which is in Johnson County. I wonder if the individual departments in Johnson County with their own frequencies pooled them for the new county system?

Regardless, I am NOT looking forward to this! :roll:
 

fwradio

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It looks like they did pool a lot of the channels together. Maybe there was no regard to possible interference to Hood County when they planned this. I can't believe that they would have repeaters that close to Hood County pounding them on the input and the output side like that.

Who's the brain surgeon who planned this one?
 

jason51

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I am quite sure that the brain surgeon behind that worked for motorola.
 

ce2576

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Yeah, I'm getting the feeling that this system is being built on the cheap!
I'm still trying to figure out why they would use the frequencies for Alvarado FD on
the Cleburne site. Wouldn't it make more sense to use those on the Alvarado site?
That way your further away from Hood County and less likely to cause interference.

At any rate, I'm predicting that there's going to problems with this system.
I hope I'm wrong though
 

fwradio

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For the sake of firefighters and law enforcement, I hope you're wrong also, but I am with you. I predict a lot of issues.
 

ce2576

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Due to the interference with Hood County, Johnson County is supposed to be making
some changes to their Passport system within the next couple of days.

Based on the inside info I have, I believe it will change from LTR Passport to LTR Standard.
 

af5rn

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Due to the interference with Hood County, Johnson County is supposed to be making
some changes to their Passport system within the next couple of days.

Based on the inside info I have, I believe it will change from LTR Passport to LTR Standard.
Yes!!! There IS a God!!! :D

I notice they have already shut off the blips on the Hood County output frequency (153.890), but they are still blipping the Hood County input frequency (154.445). At least it is a lot less frequent than what was going on on the output.

So now the only thing I'm missing by not having Passport trunking is CareFlite, I guess.
 
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af5rn

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Well now, sometime around 0100cst, the LTR blips started coming across 155.145, which is Cleburne site 3 on the Johnson County system, every ten seconds, which is the same as on 154.445, Cleburne site 2.

Tres' annoying, but at least there are no co-users on 155.145 in North Texas.
 

ce2576

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To clarify my last post, I'm only presuming they will change to LTR standard. That's based on
some inside info that I have. They could still use this system as LTR Passport, but the only way they
could do it, as I see it, would be to put 153.890 & 154.445 on the Alvarado site or not use them altogether.
That would be the only way to reduce and/or eliminate the interference with Hood County.
Unless they change the system to LTR standard of course. Which I would prefer anyway.
 

fwradio

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Hearing Passport idle messages every 2 seconds on 154.445 again. Also hearing Hood County Fire getting tore up by it. They had turned it off for a while, but it came on again at the end of last week.
 

ce2576

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Hearing Passport idle messages every 2 seconds on 154.445 again. Also hearing Hood County Fire getting tore up by it. They had turned it off for a while, but it came on again at the end of last week.
I'm still not sure what the heck they were thinking using 153.890/154.445 as frequencies
for this stupid Passport system. I'm becoming more convinced that Johnson County got seriously
hood-winked into buying a system that they really didn't need. Kind of like Burleson and their decision
to go with a standard LTR system. It's like the old saying 'trying to keep up with the Jones's '

On a side note, I can faintly pick up Wise County on 154.445, and they to are being 'tore up'
by the data blips.
 

Linn

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I don't know that they got hoodwinked, they just weren't willing to spend the money. The County Commisioners were presented at least two options for a new radio system. One was the passport system and the other was a Motorola P25 trunked system. The P25 system was significantly more expensive that the passport system. The Commisioners voted for the cheapest option. Maybe its a case of being penny wise and pound foolish. I guess time will tell.

I do know that Cleburne Fire had a problem with the new system while working a structure fire a week ago. Their radios were not working for some reason and they had to use PD Officers to relay information between FF's on the fireground.

I took my radio to the Fire Department this week and asked to have it programmed on their system. They told me not to bother for now because there were going to be some changes to the system and it would just have to be reprogrammed soon.

Linn
 

fwradio

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I know that when they were looking at buying the system that they did not look anywhere else than DFW Comms. I'm sure someone could have warned them about trying to use Passport for public safety. The simple truth: it won't work. It's going to be worse than having firefighters using P25 inside of a structure fire. Only on Passport it won't be uninteligible audio, your radio will start to roam at the absolute worst time and you won't be able to communicate.
 

ce2576

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The Commisioners voted for the cheapest option.
Maybe its a case of being penny wise and pound foolish. I guess time will tell.

Linn
Cheapest option doesn't always mean the best deal. I think penny wise and pound foolish
definitley sums it up.

But why the decision to use use 153.890/154.445 ??? Was their not one single person
who had the foresight to realize that this would cause interference with Hood County??

It just seems like there was a complete disregard for this. Anyone who has any experience
with Passport systems, should know about the constant data blips.

Chris
 

bpckty1

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The frequency selection mystery reminds me of a story a radio company owner told me. Several years ago, before scanners were programmable, a customer wanted to lease time on his repeaters. There were 5 frequencies/channels available, so a radio was programmed so he could monitor all of the available freqs. The customer noticed that all but one were busy, but one had very little activity, so, in early August, he chose the quiet one. By early September he was very upset because the radio shop owner had neglected or forgotten to mention that the quiet frequency was also used by a school district for the transportation department. Can you say, "Oops, sorry"?

Sounds like the Johnson County problem is a rerun of the above scenario.
 

ce2576

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Well, a slight change has been made to the Passport system. All activity is
now on 155.145. This is listed as CH. 3 on the Cleburne site of the Passport system.

In addition to Linn's remark about Cleburne Fire having trouble with the system, Keene Fire
also had trouble communicating on it while working a structure fire last Sunday.
 

ce2576

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I noticed last night around midnight, that Alvarado FD was dispatching
off their old freq last night, 153.890 PL 173.8 . They had been on the new
Passport system until the last freq change noted in my last post.

Could be because their radios haven't been re-programmed yet.
 

fwradio

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Any news from inside the county? I heard yesterday that the county has requested that DFW Communications pull the system out. I was told the county is looking at other options.
 
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