Leeds and Grenville Fire to go Digital

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Jammin_Jay

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Looks like Leeds & Grenville are going to have a new digital dispatch system.

I came across this article in the Brockville recorder and times...

The United counties comittee accepteda presentation for the system from an engineer. One of the main issues was the inoperability to communicate from EMS to police to fire. Be interesting to see how this is going to be implemented.

Its going to cost 6 million dollars to overhaul the current system.

The engineer also noted that two radio frequencies are currently available from the CRTC (industry canada) for a narrow-band voice channel system elements he recommends include a narrow-band voice channel.

And for those wondering about encryption. The engineer states "For example, there's been no request for an expensive encrypted service common with police communications", he said.

Here is the Brockville newspaper article link...

Counties exploring new fire dispatch system - Brockville Recorder and Times - Ontario, CA
 
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smittyj77

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Hopefully they dont get suckered into going digital thinking it will give them better reception. A good idea would be to use exisiting Fleetnet towers which would work great... Then you know you have good infrastrcture.. Becuase going Digital without upgrading their infrastructure would be a dumb idea.
 

smittyj77

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I have a question about the current 154.430, how come most of the time I can only hear one side of the conversation (dispatch) And yet for say example Tackaberry Construction i can hear both sides of the conversation all over the county ?
 

bpsmicro

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It's a multi-site simplex channel, not a repeater. You'll only hear transmissions in range of your receiver, which is most often just dispatch unless the call is near you. Some of the departments seem to have more powerful truck radios than others, so there's some variability.
 

smittyj77

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But why can you hear dispatch loud and clear no matter where you are? Dispatch is in Brockville and you can hear loud in clear In kemptville, athens, portland etc..
 

Jammin_Jay

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Because they are microwaved to towers in the county from the dispatch center, on Laurier Blvd in Brockville. If you ever get a chance drive by the fire station on laurier, You will notice a tower, with cylinderical horn/can shaped cones point in 7 or 8 different directions. They are pointing to the towers. The dispatch is relayed through one of those cones, depending on which tower they want to tone out or broadcast on a microwave frequency . Then At that tower from the relay, it is transmitted on 154.430. And the vice-versa. A fire truck talks back it goes through the tower. Its a multi simplex set up. Each of these towers throughout
the county, also has a cylinderical shaped can/horn , just one though, not 7, only the dispatch tower has the 7 or 8.

There is a map of where all the towers are, someone posted once on RR here. Just have to go digging
for it. Leeds & Grenville tower map. Not to be confused with the Fleetnet Map, 2 different maps we are talking about here

I can hear brockville Dispatch down here in Kingston, but they are relaying off of a tower near Gananoque. which is closer to me.
 
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new system

even if they did migrate to the fleetnet system they would have to put in more towers to fill in all the dead spots. If they did would they put repeaters in every truck or just the ones that respond to every call?
 
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dead spots

they would have to put a tower in north leeds area and in leeds andthe 1000 islands area and maybe put one in the merrickville area. I was also think about the addditional loading on the system. I guess they would have to come up with a couple pairs of new crossband frequencies too. But I guess for 6 mill you do'nt have to worry about building your infistructure system you just let some else worry about it.On the other side why could they not build a system like Kingston?
 

smittyj77

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I was thinkin - Fleetnet Tower sites , the towers are already there - utilize them and put antennas up on them because you know that coverage area works great - 30 mile radius on each tower, your almost guarnateed to have good overlap. I dont know much about radios and all that jazz but that seems to make sense to me.
 

Jammin_Jay

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According to the study proposal by the engineer from Ottawa. Industry Canada has allocated 2 narrowband frequencies for use in the county, in addition to the frequencies that are already being used by L&G fire dispatch. I don't think they are going to go the fleetnet route. They will likely use the towers already in place, as well as maybe install new ones. The ambulance already has the capability to talk to the fire dispatch in brockville, on a fire mobile radio. This is in addition the Fleetnet radio already in the ambulance. The topic of communications between the EMS and FIRE were a main thing, when discussing the new digital radio system. Ambulance is analog on fleetnet already. This leads me to believe it will be Fire depts in the county only that will be digital. They have assumed that the police, will not want to be apart of this. The only police department that has their own system in the United counties are Gananoque and Brockville, gan which is rolling code inversion analog, and brockville which is clear analog. All others are OPP. It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Who knows, perhaps things could change. It all has to do with $$$$$$$. And obviously the lowest bid would win. If the police board of the brock and gan pd would jump on the idea of having full encrypted digital communications at a fraction of the cost, they may jump on it. I don;t know the current contract time/conditions with Glentel communications with respect to those 2 pd depts i mentioned.

About fleetnet. Not only Morton and Prescott towers are used in the united counties. U also have the surrounding counties, and their towers, such as winchester tower for some kemptville comms, and the Drummond tower for Northern leeds county. And sometimes you will get comms from gananoque on harrowsmith tower north of Kingston. These towers will pick up the mobile depending where it is and relay comms accordingly the BMR fleetnet system.
 
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Jammin_Jay

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I also have a document that i found. It is the leeds & grenville governance and finance commitee
and section (7.0.5.9 ) is the Report on Fire Communication System Migration from Analog to Digital Technology.

According the report, Motorola said they can no longer supply the current system past december 31,2012.

Here is a copy of the report
Look under section 7.0.5.9 to see what has been talked about.


http://www.uclg.ca/en/government/resources/GFMinutes06-Nov-08.doc

The plan would take 4 or 5 years to develop. And the county wants the fire service to submit one bulk
order to changeover to digital implentation and cost that would be required.

Motorola also advised the County committee member that after 2012 analog parts would not be available to fix equipment
and moving towards all digital.
 
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bpsmicro

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Keep in mind that "digital" in this context means "trunking". It does *not* necessarily mean digitally-encoded voice. This is the most common misinterpretation people make when they see the word "digital". Wherever you see the word "digital" in these various documents, substitute "trunking" and it all makes much more sense.

Brad.
 

DaveH

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Keep in mind that "digital" in this context means "trunking". It does *not* necessarily mean digitally-encoded voice. This is the most common misinterpretation people make when they see the word "digital". Wherever you see the word "digital" in these various documents, substitute "trunking" and it all makes much more sense.

Brad.
Brad, I think you are mixing up the distinction between digital
voice and trunking (whether digital or analog). The push is toward
digital voice is largely due to spectrum efficiency that even
narrowband analog can't meet (7-8kHz bandwith v. 11-12.5kHz).

Many systems don't need to be trunked. Trunking adds efficiency
over top of narrowbanding, but has its overhead (control channel(s)).
A small system with (say) three channels only has two talk channels
available; a bit of absurd case is the commercial EDACS system in
Ottawa with one talk channel ( albeit a degenerated system at this point).
This is why LTR is still quite popular for analog systems.

I would not automatically substitute "trunking" for "digital"; I think
that is over-generalizing, and not sure it applies to the case in point.

Dave
 

Jammin_Jay

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Well the report indicate from the engineer, that 2 narrowband frequencies are allocated to the county for use from industry canada. Thats all that was specified. I would assume that is digital dave? Nothing was mentioned about trunking or whether its and LTR, or Mototrbo or whatever.

But Motorola indicating that parts for analog systems are going to be obsolete by 2012, is defintely a push towards digital.
They are basically saying if your current analog system takes a crap, in the next 3 years, we are not going to be able to fix it,
so you are going to have to go digital. And i can see that in the next 3 years, slowly and surely, different depts that still
run analog will migrate to digital once they understand that they have to spend the money on a new digital system, because
analog parts cannot be replaced anymore. Its a kick in the but really.

The FCC mandate deadline for narrowband digital communications to be in effect is january 1,2013.
so i can understand the dec 31, 2012 .
Thats for anything under 512 Mhz
 
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mikewazowski

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It's definitely not a move to trunking. It's the replacement of the existing equipment with digital.

However, it doesn't say that analog will be obsolete by 2012.

It says that Glentel will not be able to provide maintenance for an analog component of the current system after December 2012 and that there is no replacement for this component. If that component fails, the system will be off the air until the entire system can be replaced.

Glentel is warning Council that the current system is becoming obsolete and replacement parts for the system will be no longer available. They are recommending a switch to a digital system and council wants to do it all in one purchase.

Keep in mind that the current line of Motorola radios and infrastructure such as repeaters are all analog capable.

Council could easily replace the infrastructure with MotoTRBO repeaters operating in analog mode and continue to use the existing portables and mobiles. As the end user gear wears out, they could replace it with TRBO equipment still running in analog mode.

Many agencies in Simcoe County are using TRBO gear in analog mode.
 
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