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LWIN Local Tower Question

GrantW

Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Duson, LA and Erath, LA
When setting up my favorites via Sentinel, I was curious if I needed multiple LWIN tower frequencies in my area to hear the same take groups?

For example, roughly half of my week I stay south of the Youngsville area just north of Erath, so I have a favorites list using the Abbeville LWIN tower frequency along with the local agencies in Vermillion Parish. Likewise, when I'm in the Duson area, I use the Scott and Lafayette tower to monitor agencies in that area.

My question--can local LWIN talkgroups only be heard on the closest tower to their location, or can the same broadcast be picked up by multiple LWIN towers in the general area?

Sorry if this has already been answered.
 

GrantW

Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Duson, LA and Erath, LA
I guess to simplify my question. Is the LWIN system like a trunked statewide repeater system whereby if you can "patch-in" to one LWIN tower, you can listen to any talkgroup throughout the state?
 

jro985

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
32
Location
SE Louisiana
The answer to your question is yes...for the most part. Every talkgroup on the LWIN system is available on every site in the sate, but it will only be heard by a scanner if an actual radio is using the tower with it's selected talkgroup. So if you are in Youngsville, and hear a transmission from an agency you'd normally hear from the Scott area, someone from Scott is in Youngsville with their radio on their channel. The radio has to "tell" the tower that "I'm here" to have whichever talkgroup the radio is physically on.
 

GrantW

Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Duson, LA and Erath, LA
The answer to your question is yes...for the most part. Every talkgroup on the LWIN system is available on every site in the sate, but it will only be heard by a scanner if an actual radio is using the tower with it's selected talkgroup. So if you are in Youngsville, and hear a transmission from an agency you'd normally hear from the Scott area, someone from Scott is in Youngsville with their radio on their channel. The radio has to "tell" the tower that "I'm here" to have whichever talkgroup the radio is physically on.
Ah, thank you for the response. That's making more sense. So, I wouldn't be able to monitor an agency, in say Monroe, consistently from a tower in Abbeville? Only if someone from that agency happens to be travelling through the Abbeville area?
 

jro985

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
32
Location
SE Louisiana
Ah, thank you for the response. That's making more sense. So, I wouldn't be able to monitor an agency, in say Monroe, consistently from a tower in Abbeville? Only if someone from that agency happens to be travelling through the Abbeville area?
No problem. That is correct.
 

slayer816

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
145
Location
Bastrop, Louisiana
After a few years of monitoring LWIN, I've discovered the following (only in north LA) concerning which talk-groups are normally broadcast on what towers.

My local tower is 3-12 (Bastrop). I can monitor all my parish services, and "parish" services of my neighbors. So the neighboring parish Sherriff's Office channels are always monitor-able. I cannot always monitor the next parish over's "city services". Monroe is in Ouachita, I'm in Morehouse. Monroe PD only shows up on my tower sometimes. Monroe Fire, West Monroe PD/FD, and other services NEVER broadcast on my tower. If I move within range of the Monroe tower, Monroe/WM "city" services start broadcasting and so do Ouachita Parish neighbors (Caldwell and Lincoln for example) that I couldn't hear on Bastrop's tower.

I assume, but do not know for certain, that it's all computer based load priority. If every agency in the state always broadcasted on every tower, it would use up all available frequencies which defeats the purpose. So no matter where I go, I can always hear LSP/LDWF and other state talk-groups but only Region 3 (Troop F/G/E). Regions 1 and 2 only light up if one of their units appears in my area. Also, lets say if a Nachitoches unit happens to come to my area and use my tower. I can now hear their talk-group for awhile whereas before, I could not.

All have the ability, but that doesn't seem to be the default. Certain talk-groups I can hear on all towers, some I hear on several towers but just in my area, and some I can only hear on my tower and that's it.

That is how it appears to be, for me and in my area.
 

jro985

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
32
Location
SE Louisiana
After a few years of monitoring LWIN, I've discovered the following (only in north LA) concerning which talk-groups are normally broadcast on what towers.

My local tower is 3-12 (Bastrop). I can monitor all my parish services, and "parish" services of my neighbors. So the neighboring parish Sherriff's Office channels are always monitor-able. I cannot always monitor the next parish over's "city services". Monroe is in Ouachita, I'm in Morehouse. Monroe PD only shows up on my tower sometimes. Monroe Fire, West Monroe PD/FD, and other services NEVER broadcast on my tower. If I move within range of the Monroe tower, Monroe/WM "city" services start broadcasting and so do Ouachita Parish neighbors (Caldwell and Lincoln for example) that I couldn't hear on Bastrop's tower.

I assume, but do not know for certain, that it's all computer based load priority. If every agency in the state always broadcasted on every tower, it would use up all available frequencies which defeats the purpose. So no matter where I go, I can always hear LSP/LDWF and other state talk-groups but only Region 3 (Troop F/G/E). Regions 1 and 2 only light up if one of their units appears in my area. Also, lets say if a Nachitoches unit happens to come to my area and use my tower. I can now hear their talk-group for awhile whereas before, I could not.

All have the ability, but that doesn't seem to be the default. Certain talk-groups I can hear on all towers, some I hear on several towers but just in my area, and some I can only hear on my tower and that's it.

That is how it appears to be, for me and in my area.
Speaking from the radio programming side of LWIN and how the system operates.......
All talkgroups (6207 and counting) are available on every tower site (140 and counting) throughout the state. But the only way they will be heard by a scanner user, is if they are "requested" by an actual radio user having their radio affiliated with that site. Then that site will broadcast that requested talkgroup. Minutes after that radio leaves the area, powers off, or changes channels, that tower site will drop that talkgroup.

You'll hear LSP/LDWF/SFM on just about every site being most Troop HQ's have radios set to monitor them. The reason your neighboring Parish Sheriff's office is always monitorable on your local site, is most likely your Parish Sheriff's Office has a radio set to their channel in the dispatch office.

The newer radios being used can be programmed for "site priority". Possibly the reason you don't hear W Monroe FD/PD's radios, they may be programmed to only use the West Monroe & Calhoun sites unless the site failure then the radio will roam to another site.

From the looks of site coverage, the Bastrop site covers Morehouse, part of Union, and part of Ouichita. So you shouldn't have an issue hearing most radio traffic of those Parishes.

The system is not computer load based, it's based on how many channels each site has. For instance Bastrop has 1 tower site with 8 channels, 1 being a control, so 7 different agencies or talkgroups can be active on that site at one time. If an 8th tries to use the Bastrop site, they will get a "busy" when trying to access the site. Ouachita has 28 channels over 3 towers, giving 25 with 3 controls. Union has 3 towers, 18 channels giving them 15 with 3 controls. Channels per site and number of sites are based on usage and agency load.
 

GrantW

Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Duson, LA and Erath, LA
Thanks for all the info. It certainly makes sense from a technical perspective; however, it would be great to be able to monitor any desired TG throughout the state from your nearest tower. If, for instance, there's a major incident in a particular area of the state where you're not in range.
 

jro985

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
32
Location
SE Louisiana
Thanks for all the info. It certainly makes sense from a technical perspective; however, it would be great to be able to monitor any desired TG throughout the state from your nearest tower. If, for instance, there's a major incident in a particular area of the state where you're not in range.
Technical and logical perspective and design. All TG transmitting on every tower at all times....That will never happen. Trucked radio systems are designed for radio users. As a radio user, I can monitor/talk on any authorized TG throughout the state. Scanner users just have the ability to monitor the unencrypted TG’s on the towers they are within range.
 

GrantW

Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Duson, LA and Erath, LA
When you say you're a "radio user", are you stating that you currently work for public safety dept. and therefore have a dept.-issued radio? Or something else? If you don't mind me asking.
 

slayer816

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
145
Location
Bastrop, Louisiana
Thanks for the insight on how the towers work! Seems as though my years old assumption was correct but controlled by the subscribers radio and not the actual site itself, correct? I also assume that its the reason Monroe/West Monroe have two independent sites next to each other instead of a simulcast system for the area. Roughly balanced site assigned radios for each one since both generally have the same range (roughly)? I never understood that but I'm starting to.
 

jro985

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
32
Location
SE Louisiana
Thanks for the insight on how the towers work! Seems as though my years old assumption was correct but controlled by the subscribers radio and not the actual site itself, correct? I also assume that its the reason Monroe/West Monroe have two independent sites next to each other instead of a simulcast system for the area. Roughly balanced site assigned radios for each one since both generally have the same range (roughly)? I never understood that but I'm starting to.
The subscriber's radio has to tell the site which talkgroup is needed for it to operate on. And I'm not sure on the exact requirements on simulcast being used over individual sites, but from previous sites being switched to simulcast, it was once more than 3 sites cover the same general area.
 

riccom

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 2, 2004
Messages
1,107
Location
SLIDELL, LA
Sorta related to the towers question, i am near the superdome and i hear no cc for it at all, is it doa site or only for events?
 
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