MSP "Patches" / TG's in county TRS's

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maus92

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Can anyone enlighten me how the MSP connects to the various county TRS's? Do the Troopers use 800 radios in those counties who have MSP TG's, or do they used their own VHFs? When a Trooper uses his VHF, is it repeated on the TG, or is it not heard? Does the barrack have an 800 radio, or a console with an audio patch to the TRS? Feel free to answer in detail, and add any scenarios that will help to explain how this works.

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jparks29

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depends ....

most common scenario....

county EOC has a transciever tuned to MSP lowband channel for that area/district.

MSP lowband audio is then piped into a TG on the trunked system...and vice versa,audio from the trunked system is piped onto the LB radio...



other times, troopers have actual 800 radios,that transmit on the trunked system, and also pipe the audio from the trunked system, and transmit it on the MSP lowband system...


essentially, it works like this.....

Lowband VHF <---> 800 Trunked Talkgroup
 
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ka3jjz

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In AA county's case, the situation is similar, but in the case of the Troopers, if memory serves, 154.34 is used for AA, and 154.22 for Howard. 73s Mike
 

jparks29

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ka3jjz said:
In AA county's case, the situation is similar, but in the case of the Troopers, if memory serves, 154.34 is used for AA, and 154.22 for Howard. 73s Mike
what? they have countywide patches on those VHF freqs????
 

doctordave

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I think Mike is referencing MSP helo patches into trunked systems. I don't think I've ever heard an MSP ground unit use those particular freqs for tie-in to 800.

Speaking of patches, cannot help but wonder if MSP has invested anything in fixed station equipment of this sort, in addition to what they have available in the Mobile Command Post. Some time ago, the MARNIS system was quite robust via the Waterloo Barrack & the former Valley Barrack....seems this old system has been in the mothballs since back in the 80's.
 

ka3jjz

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jparks29 said:
you mean for trooper helo's...right?
Correct. As I understand it, Some Eastern Shore counties have actually given the ground units 800 Mhz handhelds so they can work into their county's 800 system. 73s Mike

[edit] And don't forget about the PMARS patch from 866.3625 to the old 39.62 MSP frequency. If memory serves - I haven't listened to it for a while - some of the MSP barracks can link into that as well.
 
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maus92

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For the record, I am talking about MSP troopers in ground units, not their helicopters. And when I refer to VHF, I'm talking about the low band VHF mobile radio system.

Moving on, I'm gathering that the troopers are using county issued 800 portables, and for the most part, the barracks continue to communicate with troopers via their VHF system. This implies that in order to hear everything, you must monitor both systems.

It has always seemed to me that the MSP communications system has been a patchwork affair, kind of kludged together with half-measures to tide them over, and never really implementing a modern integrated system. They are still operating (for the most part,) a simplex VHF radio system utilizing design philosophies developed in the 30's and '40's. In fact, throughout the disparate state of Maryland public safety agencies, there seems to be little thoughful (or coordinated) investment in communications technology. The Natural Resources Police, Forestry fire fighters, DNR Rangers, MdTA Police, DGS Police, MTA Police, the various university police departments, the SHA are all on separate systems, yet could all need to communicate in some fashion during routine and extordinary circumstances. On one hand, a Mobile Communications behemoth might be helpful in some sort of extended crisis, but for routine interoperability needs it is just about useless.

I'm sorry to stray off topic.....

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maus92

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As far as counties giving troopers 800 radios, I think that the Westminster (Carroll County) Barracks operates and dispatches on the county 800 system - can anyone confirm this?

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mlevin

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maus92 said:
As far as counties giving troopers 800 radios, I think that the Westminster (Carroll County) Barracks operates and dispatches on the county 800 system - can anyone confirm this?

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They seem to have a two-way patch. Some of the troopers are on the 800 side, and some are on the lo-band side. I think that is how it works.
 

kb3jkc

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The problem is not just with MSP or the State of Maryland, it's also with the 23 counties and Baltimore City. As each county, one by one, switches to a trunked system, it may or may not be directly compatible with adjacent counties' systems. If not, some sort of "patch" is needed for the two radio systems to talk to each other.

Also, for years there's been talk within the State of Md and in MSP about upgrading to a modern, statewide trunked system. For various reasons, not the least being the cost, it hasn't happened yet. What has happened is that when a county government switches to a new system, MSP will often buy (not for free) portable radios from the county or it's vendor to issue to the troopers. There is always a patch to the MSP lowband system to allow for communication with troopers from other areas who are passing through or who may be working in that county temporarily.

By the way, has anyone noticed the poor voice quality of the MSP radios in Howard County since their switch to 800 last year? It's nothing like in other counties (Frederick, Carroll, etc), and makes understanding radio traffic a challenge.
 

rpoole23

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Well before I moved out here to Nevada, in St. Mary's County the MSP are issued hand-held 800mhz radios from the County. The troopers still have their hi-band radios both in their cars and hand-helds. The county trunked system has a few TG's set aside for MSP such as dispatch and a few TAC channels. The Barrack T station has a console for their dispatcher to use. The transmissions are re-broadcast on the low-band 39.380mhz as well so that when they need coverage from outside the area (from LaPlata or Calvert) the ouside troopers can just utilize their low-band radio and just tune it to Barrack T freq. Since both the Sheriff and MSP are using the same system, it helped quite a bit since both respond to just about every priority call. Much better than the old system where we (Sheriff's Ofc) had to try and listen to the MSP on a scanner in our cars and then talk on our low-band (39.46) while they talked on 39.38. So in St. Mary's County and Calvert County the troopers are issued portable radios from the county for use on the trunked system, and at the same time keeping their current low-band set-up.
 

ChattyKathy

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Balto Co PD

Some of the MSP units at both Westminster & Golden Ring have Balto Co 800 Portables.
 

N1508J

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Not allowed...infraction.
I rekon MSP can't afford to go 800 since all that thar cash wuz spent on that fancy new mobile command center! To heck with the troopers, we gots the BIGGEST shiney rolling ko-mand truk in de nashun!
 

maus92

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That was really my point - spending money on a flashy new toy that , although megacapable, might me used once every 3 years, vs. spending the money on technology (a statewide TRS) that would be used continuously.

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