Phoenix Fire Switch

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Does anyone here know when the switch over to simulcast b will occur? I know they are having major issues with structure fire applications for the current system, but have heard they are going to use vehicular repeaters and wondered if anyone knew how well this was going or any information on when the vhf system will be dumped.

Why is it similar systems are made to work well enough in other cities but not in ours? What is different?

Assuming the new system can be made to work, what advantages will it offer over the current system other than having more "channels" (tg's actually)?
 

AZScanner

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Does anyone here know when the switch over to simulcast b will occur? I know they are having major issues with structure fire applications for the current system, but have heard they are going to use vehicular repeaters and wondered if anyone knew how well this was going or any information on when the vhf system will be dumped.
I don't think anyone knows for sure. PFD is pushing back on this ULTRA hard but I think eventually they'll be told they have to use it. Right now there's a bit of a stalemate going on. No one wants to be the bad guy who says "Sorry PFD we know you can't communicate worth poop on the fireground with this thing but too bad, the lights go out tomorrow on the VHF channels."

Why is it similar systems are made to work well enough in other cities but not in ours? What is different?
The Phoenix system is totally different than other systems out there. It was custom designed from the ground up to seamlessly communicate voice and data between federal VHF, municipal 700 & 800 MHz and conventional VHF radio systems. It's the first of it's kind ever deployed so naturally there's been quite a few bugs - some big enough to saddle up and ride on.

Assuming the new system can be made to work, what advantages will it offer over the current system other than having more "channels" (tg's actually)?
See above. Anyone will be able to talk to anyone. Say you're a Phoenix PD detective working a bank robbery and you want to relay critical info to the FBI enroute. Just change channels and talk. Done. Suppose you're a Phoenix FD chief and you need PD onscene to handle crowd control. Just change channels and talk. Done. Suppose you're a Gilbert PD officer on a major incident and you need to talk to the Mesa PD Seargeant across the street? Or suppose you need to relay critical BOLO information to every agency in the valley at once? You get the idea. Once it's up and running fully it will be quite an accomplishment in interoperability. But... as Judge Dredd once said, that's only "if they can get it to actually work."

-AZ
 
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Still in infancy

Well we are a long way from most of those things happening. I hear all the time one guy asking dispatch if he can get ahold of whoever with whatever other department, and have only heard interop hot calls a few times.

The few times I have heard it tried, it was a real mess and very frustrating for all involved.

Once I heard Glendale, Phoenix, and MCSO all coordinating on a search, and it was a fiasco, where nobody knew who to listen to for orders. Nobody was quite sure who was calling the shots and or should be listened to.

When doing interop, one person in one agency must take command for it to really work and they don't seem to have any protocol for that when coordinating two or more pd's.
 

SCPD

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Your description of the search does not sound like a communications problem or a radio system problem alone. It sounds like they did not initiate the ICS system soon enough to make sure everyone was on the same page. Knowing who is in charge and who you are working for is essential in multi-agency responses. There has to be an incident commander identified for every incident and there is a set protocol used to establish who it is.
 
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