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pghsteel

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Hey, first post to the forum. I have a few questions to ask for the fellow pennsylvanians. I'm looking into getting into the hobby and I just want to make sure i know all the laws regarding police scanners and such in your vehicles. Is there any laws in pa regarding this? or where can i find "truthful" information on the internet regarding this matter.

next is, what kind of scanner should i get to mount in my vehicle? i have no clue about any of this stuff, so all the information that i need to know on going about any of this will be much appreciated.

thank you all.
dave
 

trap5858

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Dave,

Welcome to scanning. First off, what do you want to scan? Will you need digital APCO for your area?

If you are just entering the hobby- I suggest getting a hand held as they are much more versatile. You can use it in a car, as far as the legality of it, it is all subject to interpretation. What you do with the information you hear on the scanner must be kept to yourself.

See discussions elsewhere on the site about people's preferences in selecting handheld units. I have a Radio Shack pro-96 that I use in the car- it does digital as well as conventional analog so all bases are covered.

Herb
 

ctrabs74

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pghsteel said:
I'm looking into getting into the hobby and I just want to make sure i know all the laws regarding police scanners and such in your vehicles. Is there any laws in pa regarding this? or where can i find "truthful" information on the internet regarding this matter.

There are, to the best of my knowledge, no restrictions on using mobile scanners in vehicles in Pennsylvania. Here's a good source for state-by-state laws regarding same:

http://www.afn.org/~afn09444/scanlaws/
 

pghsteel

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May 25, 2006
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I have no clue if my area is digital or not. So when selecting a unit, if its handheld or vehicle mount, it will say digital and analog modes?
 

scanjunkie

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Jan 8, 2003
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Montgomery County, PA
Hi Dave,
Welcome!! What county do you live in?? If you can tell us that we can probably help you out as far as what radio systems are in your area then we can direct you to the proper scanner. Do you want to listen to Police/Fire/EMS, or something else?

Also, the only scanner law you have to be concerned with is that it is illegal to commit a crime with the aid of a scanner. And what you hear on the scanner does NOT have to be kept to yourself. It is on the public airwaves and anyone can listen to it so it is therefore public information. You obviously can't use any info you hear on the scanner to commit a crime or anything like that, but as far as keeping it to yourself...not true.
Good luck and enjoy this great hobby!!
 

pghsteel

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May 25, 2006
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I live in westmoreland county, and yes pretty much only police/fire/ems. I already have a cb mounted in the vehicle. I wanted to make sure I knew the legality of it incase i would ever get pulled over i dont have a state trooper chewing my ear out because of it.

I saw one scanner that I was interested in, it had trunking capability..i think thats what it was. I tried reading up on that to understand it some more and sorry, i was just clueless on it.

Also, I will be traveling to south carolina for vacation this year, would i have a problem traveling from pa to south carolina with that in my vehicle as well? thanks...this is a great forum so far!

dave
 

redbeard

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pghsteel said:
I live in westmoreland county, and yes pretty much only police/fire/ems. I already have a cb mounted in the vehicle. I wanted to make sure I knew the legality of it incase i would ever get pulled over i dont have a state trooper chewing my ear out because of it.

I saw one scanner that I was interested in, it had trunking capability..i think thats what it was. I tried reading up on that to understand it some more and sorry, i was just clueless on it.

Also, I will be traveling to south carolina for vacation this year, would i have a problem traveling from pa to south carolina with that in my vehicle as well? thanks...this is a great forum so far!

dave

Since you say you live in Westmoreland, you definitely need a digital scanner such as the Radio Shack PRO-96 or the Uniden BC-396T. The county has a trunked system which is 100% digital for all services. Somebody who lives in the area can clarify further if I am wrong on any part, as I am in Beaver county and haven't yet ventured out that way to monitor yet.

Shawn
 

ctrabs74

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California, PA
pghsteel said:
I live in westmoreland county, and yes pretty much only police/fire/ems.

You're going to need a digital-capable scanner; Westmoreland County is a Motorola Project-25 TRS. All PD/FD/EMS operate on this system.

http://www.radioreference.com/modules.php?name=TRSDB&sid=2594

Also, Fayette County has a Moto Smartnet system, but it's analog.

http://www.radioreference.com/modules.php?name=RR&ctid=2266

You can also check out the Western Pa. Scanner site; it provides a detailed listing of PD/FD/EMS station ids for most counties in Western Pa.:

http://www.wpascanner.com
 

pghsteel

Member
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
4
so in order to listen to anything, you have to push in the frequency? or when you scan through, the department name comes on the screen automatically? how does this work...or is it all in the directions of the manual when you buy the scanner..sorry for the dumb questions. thanks again.
dave
 
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