NY: Statewide Interop & Emergency Communications Board Holds Meeting, March 27

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ipfd320

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Issued By: NYS - Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Services
Issued On: 03/22/12 2:28 PM
Affected Jurisdictions: New York
Category / Publication: Press Release - General

The Statewide Interoperable and Emergency Communications (SIEC) Board will hold a meeting on Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. in Albany, New York.

Pursuant to Section Article 26 of the Executive Law and Article 6A of the County Law, this Board was established to review policies and programs intended to improve interoperable and emergency communications for first responders throughout the State and make recommendations to the Commissioner of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.

The Board will consider guidelines for statewide interoperable communications planning and the development of regionally-based public safety radio communications systems consistent with federal mandates, industry best practices and parameters for the use of resources for this purpose. In addition, the Board is authorized to promulgate and revise standards for the operation of public safety answering points within New York State.

In accordance with Executive Order #3, the SIEC Board Meeting will be open to the public. A video of the meeting will be available for viewing for two (2) business days following the meeting and can be viewed on the Internet at NYS Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Services.

The webcast will be available on the website for thirty (30) days following the meeting.

Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Time: 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Location: Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Services, 1220 Washington Avenue, Building 7A, 1st Floor Meeting Room, Albany, NY 12242

For additional information, please contact the Office of Interoperable and Emergency Communications by email at DHSESOIEC@dhses.ny.gov or by phone at (518) 322-4911
 

jim202

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If nothing else, it would be a good move to require any radios in the state to be mandated to include the "National Interoperability" radio frequencies that have been set aside by the FCC.

I travel around the country and spend considerable time with the 911 public safety agencies working with their radio system on interoperability with other agencies. The use of gateways and console patches do have their advantages. But when you really have some major incident like a flood or tornado in your locality, your going to have all sorts of outside agencies coming in to help.

The big problem that always crops up is how to be able to talk with incoming agencies for an incident. This is why the "National Interoperability" radio channels were set up. It provides a common frequency for everyone to communicate on. In most cases, the need to go long distances is minimal. Most of the incidences will only cover a small area. So these frequencies work well.

The problem as I find going around the country, is that many of the agencies that I have met with, either don't have these channels in their radios or have never heard about them. So even though these channels have been around for over 10 years, the word still isn't getting passed along. Maybe if the grant money that states pass out are tied to the requirement that these channels must be installed in user radios, more headway can be made.
 

cifd64

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Jim, the reason they havent heard of them is because their hihger-ups never told their programmers about it. I pushed this till I couldnt be bothered anymore on Long Island. They dont want to be told how to run their departments. I know of 3 out of 145 FD's that actually have them pluged in.

And they dont typically dont learn from disasters either.
 

SCPD

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Nationwide Interoperability Channels

In Georgia, our Statewide Interoperability Coordinator held a meeting last year inviting all radio vendors, radio shops and anyone associated with programming two way radios in our state to make them aware of the VTAC, UTAC, 7TAC, 8TAC and other interoperability channels listed in the NFOG. Some of the representatives of many of the radio shops indicated they didn't know about the interoperability channels while others indicated they wouldn't program channels in an agency's radios unless they specifically requested it. This opened up some very interesting dialog and the SIC urged every radio shop across our State to make sure all of the EMA, EMS, fire, police, sheriff's departments and other local, state and federal agencies they program radios for are aware of these frequencies and to make sure these frequencies appear in all two-way radios being used by these agencies. I'm fairly confident this was a first for our State and think it will go a long way to insure interoperabiltiy if a large incident happens. There was even some discussion about the possibility of the radio vendors making sure the interoperability frequencies automatically appear in the first zone of any two-way radios purchased by a government agency, particularly public safety, but could go as far as including radios sold to school systems, public health, public works, public utilities, etc.
 

cifd64

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MTTA, that is a great idea about auto-plugging the first zone. I hope that works out, but in NY and specifically Long Island I think we would be as little apprehensive about forcing these on the local FD/EMS agencies. Many have radio protocols or flat out resistance to federal guidlines. I have a hard time talking about narrowbanding to them.

Personally I feel the FCC needs to do more notifications about these things.
 

KC2zZe

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I am anxious to see the video of the meeting. While I concur with the sentiment above that having the national IO channels available in agency radios is a must, I'm left wondering what steps the Board took to clean up the mess that is Police Statewide (155.370), Fire Intercounty (45.880), and the former EMS Statewide (155.715), the stuff used in-state on a day-to-day basis. With narrowbanding coming before you know it (except for low band), now would be a good time to mandate a standard statewide CTCSS or DCS tone to make the channels more usable, esp. in border areas where Connecticut and New Jersey users of the same frequencies makes effective monitoring of the channels almost impossible.
 

SCPD

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PL/DPL for interoperability channels

A nationwide standard has already been set for CTCSS tones used on the majority of analog interoperability channels and even a standard NAC for digital interop channels. The NIFOG shows 156.7 as the CTCSS for 45.8800 MHz, so hopefully they are already using this as the PL for that frequency to not create a major issue in operations while reprogramming. Otherwise, they may want to put the frequency in the radios twice with the two different PL tones so the firefighters can have access to both during the transition. The national standard recommends a CTCSS tone of 156.7 be used on the majority of the analog interoperability channels, but there are some exceptions mainly when using a tactical repeater on VTAC 33 through VTAC 38 and on some of the interoperability channels for use by federal agencies only.
 

ipfd320

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I find it amazing on the inter-ops for the fire end-When i was a member in the island pk. fire dept in long island n.y--NONE of our radios had the inter-op of 45.880 in them...just 46.100 and 46.200 at the time---we finally got the uhf freq of 460.3375 and 465.100 for f/g--but still no inter-ops freqs installed....im not sure if the low band is even used anymore or if the rigs still have low band radios in them ---i have been seeing more depts on the island using uhf hi-band and swaying from the low-band---if the fcc was smart (which we know they aint) they should incorperate a standardized uhf freq for inter-ops than this 700 meg or other weird freqs where fd,s have to spend xtra funds for such complex and inferior radio networks
This is just my point of View
 

DPD1

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I find it amazing on the inter-ops for the fire end-When i was a member in the island pk. fire dept in long island n.y--NONE of our radios had the inter-op of 45.880 in them...just 46.100 and 46.200 at the time---we finally got the uhf freq of 460.3375 and 465.100 for f/g--but still no inter-ops freqs installed....im not sure if the low band is even used anymore or if the rigs still have low band radios in them ---i have been seeing more depts on the island using uhf hi-band and swaying from the low-band---if the fcc was smart (which we know they aint) they should incorperate a standardized uhf freq for inter-ops than this 700 meg or other weird freqs where fd,s have to spend xtra funds for such complex and inferior radio networks
This is just my point of View
A lot of people have been saying stuff like this for years. But of course, the manufacturers don't make much money off that. But all these stories prove that successful interoperability depends on people, not fancy technology. No technology is going to magically organize thousands of people.
 

SCPD

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Interoperability

I have been saying for years that many people in public safety have been trying to fix people problems with technology rather than dealing with the problems head-on. Vendors have been quick to throw a technological solution at us that they see as the answer to a problem, but they are not on the inside to know the real root of the problem. All of the technology in the world is not going to eliminate the personality conflicts, rivalries, turf wars, etc. to get the members of one law enforcement agency to talk to, work and cooperate with members of another law enforcement agency, members of one fire department to talk to, work and cooperate with the members of another fire department, members of a law enforcement agency to talk to, work and cooperate with members of a fire department, etc. I think some of the technology introduced over the years has helped, but technology can't completely change a heart and mind.
 

radioman2001

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I hate to sound like Big Brother, but maybe if any agency wants radio funds then they should be mandated to program Inter-ops freqs in all their radios to get the monies, or even to keep their FCC license. Politics aside,when money is waved in front of any agency they will do whatever the application requires. Case in point, the old LEAA administration of the 70's dictated colors of P.S. cars and lights for funding, a lot of agencies went to the standardized colors to get those monies and kept those colors after the funding went away. For new radio funding their should be an attachment that mandates the programing of the Interops, and a I.C. plan, because that's what the funding is supposed to be for.
As far a a people problem, I doubt anyone can fix that except the people themselves.
 

GTR8000

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I find it amazing on the inter-ops for the fire end-When i was a member in the island pk. fire dept in long island n.y--NONE of our radios had the inter-op of 45.880 in them
That's because 45.88 was never intended to be an "interop" frequency at the local level. Its purpose is for county control center to county control center communication, or for use by fire coordinators, not by individual field units.
 

Alarms50

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That's because 45.88 was never intended to be an "interop" frequency at the local level. Its purpose is for county control center to county control center communication, or for use by fire coordinators, not by individual field units.
Yes, 45.88MHz (in NYS) was for comms between control centers, fire coordinators, etc, but now that it is available as an interop freq. (along with 39.46MHz, & 45.86MHz, & (39.48MHz proposed)) http://www.safecomprogram.gov/SiteCollectionDocuments/NIFOGversion14RotatedForViewing.pdf p.25, we should have them available in all mobile radios. I have programmed 45.88MHz in all of our apparatus.
 

APX8000

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You can click on the following link to learn all about what interop channels you should have programmed in your radios:

http://www.dhs.gov/files/publications/gc_1297699887997.shtm\

Scroll to the .xls template and you can see how they should be named and programmed.

I've been all over the U.S. for natural disasters and it amazes me how many departments do not have ANY of these channels in their radios. Think about this...you have a major disaster (flood, hurricane, intentional...terrorisrm, etc) and need help and resources from outside agencies...do you think you have enough radios to go around? I don't think so. Better yet...is your communications system still intact? Ask some south Florida Counties about antennas blowing right off the tower ! I remember when Palm Beach County Fire was using a ham repeater because they lost comms during Hurricane Wilma.

If you have these frequencies programmed in, you somply assign certain resources to certain channels and agencies coming in to help go on those channels as well. Not to mention, some channels are set up for the use through a repeater for wider coverage with the use of field deployable repeaters.

Get in the game ladies and gentlemen. You need to sell this. It's for your safety, my safety and the safety of the people we are sworn to protect. And the best part...it's simple.
 

Alarms50

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