Miami-Dade County Monitoring

N4IFE

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Apr 12, 2021
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I will be in SW Miami-Dade County all of this coming week. I will have a lot of time on my hands (recovering from a very minor procedure) with some probable difficulty seeing for a few days, so I am taking my SDS100 with me for entertainment. I have not lived in the area for almost 20 years and had no time to do any meaningful research so I would certainly appreciate help with the following questions.

There are three major municipalities (Metro Dade, Miami City, Miami Beach) and a few smaller ones (Coral Gables, Homestead, Sweetwater, etc.). It appears to me the Miami-Dade County P25/Phase I system is primarily for the Metro Dade police/Fire services and the other municipalities like Miami City and Miami Beach have their own systems. This is assumption correct?

It appears most all dispatch channels are not encrypted. Is this so?

I will be staying only about 7 miles south of MIA. Any recommendation for channels associated with airport operations, ground control, security, etc.?

Is there anything I am not smart enough to know to ask that would be useful to maximize what I focus my monitoring efforts on? I typically focus on police and fire dispatch, fire ground (when active), and Fire Rescue heads up communications with hospitals. Air ops (helicopters) also have proven in the past to provide good listening. Are there any non-governmental systems that m ight prove interesting?

Thanks for any advice and suggestions.
 

sflmonitor

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Miami Dade County has quite the mix of public safety radio systems.

Miami Dade Police is on the county's 800 MHz trunked system, specifically Site 2. Their dispatch, car to car and some other non-tactical talkgroups remain unencrypted but most tac channels are. Your SDS100 is perfect for this system since their simulcast system wreaks havoc on most other scanners.

While the Miami Dade Fire Department (MDFR) does have talkgroups on the 800 trunked system, daily operations take place on their UHF conventional, analog system. MDFR does use the trunked system for some stuff to include communications with the various trauma centers as well as their Special Events channels. Non-trauma rescue-to-hospital communications are on UHF conventional as well.

The City of Miami is on their relatively new 800 MHz phase II system. Police and fire are on this system along with local government stuff. Most of their stuff is in the clear. It seems (at least to me) that their new system appears to have a bit better coverage than their legacy analog system.

Miami Beach is still operating on their old analog system but they've built out their new 800 MHz phase 2 system and should be switching over any day now.

Coral Gables is on their 800 MHz phase 2 system but unfortunately the police department talkgroups are all encrypted. You should still be able to hear fire though.

The City of Homestead Police is still on VHF conventional although they switched to digital P25 a few years back.

I hope this information helps some. Have fun and best wishes on your recovery.
 
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radioman2008

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Tampa Bay Florida
Always enjoy listening to the Miami Beach PD Analog system, its getting pretty uncommon to hear Motorola Analog systems anywhere anymore.

I would encourage you to run in discovery mode on the analog system to record its activity for history. set your session to 600 seconds, compare to database off. it will record 10 minutes per talk group and you can go into it later and listen to any of the talk groups you recorded. once you get to 10 minutes on a talkgroup it will stop recording it. so if you want to continue, start a new discovery session.

analog recordings of these systems will be quite valuable years from now for the old timers like us to listen to.
 

JimD56

KO9JAD/Fire Lieutenant/Paramedic
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Davie, FL (Miami/Fort Lauderdale Metro)
My agency, MDFR is 100% UHF analog even though there are some trunked system talkgroups assigned.
Based on where you say you are staying you are within the area of Fire Dispatch CENTRAL and TAC-3, and on the fringe of Fire Dispatch SOUTH and TAC-4, 5, or 6. Skip listening to the inter-hospital. It's busy and boring for the most part.
We have limited the issue of the Handheld APX7000xe which has the dual system capability that everyone would require if we were using both systems.
You also have Hialeah Fire which is busy.
Coral Gables' system is very weak transmitting wise and is SIMULCAST.
Enjoy
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Did Miami Beach abandon their P25 CAI operations? They were digital with a 3600 CC for a long while.
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Coral Gables has highly directional NPSPAC sites facing inward. I would expec t it to be weak in the northern and western extremes of the county.

Also, whats up with Hialeah?
 

sflmonitor

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Miami Beach had lot of issues with their old digital stuff and went back to analog years ago. I think it’s been 14 or 15 years now.

Hialeah is on their new P25 system but unfortunately their PD is encrypted. Every now and then I’ll hear a clear transmission pop up but that’s rare. Their Fire is in the clear though.
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Miami Beach had lot of issues with their old digital stuff and went back to analog years ago. I think it’s been 14 or 15 years now.

Hialeah is on their new P25 system but unfortunately their PD is encrypted. Every now and then I’ll hear a clear transmission pop up but that’s rare. Their Fire is in the clear though.
I recall Miami Beach had problems with /\/\ no longer maintaining the microwave system. Did that result in them going back to analog?
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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I am curious about that as well. Never really found out what happened with that.
In Feb 2013 there was a commission discussion titled:

REFERRAL TO THE FINANCE AND CITYWIDE PROJECTS COMMITTEE. A
DISCUSSION TO CONSIDER REPLACEMENT OF THE CITY'S PUBLIC
SAFETY RADIO SYSTEM WITH A NEW P25 COMPLIANT SYSTEM BEFORE
THE FEDERALLY MANDATED 2016 TIMEFRAME.

Which is sort of bogus as there is/was no Federal Mandate to do a P25 compliant system and the body of the memo referenced narrowbanding which does not apply to 800 MHz.

They were seeking a consultant at the time.

The existing 3600 bd CC system was accepted in mid 2005 and featured mixed mode (SZ 7.0?) P25 CAI/Analog and CAI, three site simulcast. It replaced an analog system. That new system was tested March 2005 in digital mode and provided better than 97% coverage of the city including 18 dB buildings at DAQ 3.4. If they are operating analog presently, it is with this same system.

Reportedly Harris L3 was awarded a P25 upgrade project in 2018 after battling Motorola over the deal.
 
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FATF305

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MIAMI, FL
Miami Beach is switching over to the new Harris Radio System this coming Tuesday, November 23, 2021. Dept Email went out a short while ago.
 

FATF305

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MBPD Harris Switchover was delayed for approx 1 more week from scheduled 11-23-21 date due to Administrative and Contractual Issues.
Updated Dept Email was sent out today 11-22-21.
 

FATF305

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12-1-21
UPDATE:
Radio Switchover is not happening for now and has once again been placed on HOLD until they fix Harris radio battery issues with these new Harris Radios. The new Harris Radio Battery Charge are not even lasting an entire shift presenting a huge concern about officer safety.
When will this new switchover occur ? Its anyone's guess. Stay Tuned.
 

FL2WAYRF

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Dec 22, 2012
Messages
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12-1-21
UPDATE:
Radio Switchover is not happening for now and has once again been placed on HOLD until they fix Harris radio battery issues with these new Harris Radios. The new Harris Radio Battery Charge are not even lasting an entire shift presenting a huge concern about officer safety.
When will this new switchover occur ? Its anyone's guess. Stay Tuned.
XL line?
 

FL2WAYRF

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Messages
345
yes

XL185 MODEL

i know nothing about the Harris Line Up...

I spoke with a Radio Techy and he said the drainage might be due to a radio program issue. But like I said I would not know, Sorry.

View attachment 113141
Yup I have a few of the same batteries with new date code. They aren't the best although I have been able to use mine for about 8hrs with transmit. They need to go to the high capacity batteries, I can get about 20hrs or so out of those.
 

FATF305

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Yup I have a few of the same batteries with new date code. They aren't the best although I have been able to use mine for about 8hrs with transmit. They need to go to the high capacity batteries, I can get about 20hrs or so out of those.

I do believe that MBPD has placed a new order for all new batteries. Why they did not go with highest capacity batteries to start with is anyone's guess. This entire new radio system is being funded with money from a G.O. Bond that the city received. So its easy to piss away money when its not yours.

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