• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

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Radio Interoperability Test - Charlotte

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kg4pbd

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There's an item in the Observer today about a radio test tomorrow (Thursday) at Verizon Ampitheater. Supposedly involving 11 counties to test interoperability.

Anyone know anything about this? Other than ITAC I'm curious what they will be using.
 

jeffmulter

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ITAC, as well as conventional VHF and UHF channels, might be part of the exercise.

A forum member who participated in the drill last year, and will be taking part in the drill this year, mentioned in a PM that he expected a test of the interconnection equipment that Charlotte and other agencies have acquired during the past year.

( Charlotte got a DHS grant about a year ago to install equipment, along the lines of the Raytheon JPS interfaces, to connect to all the surrounding counties. )

So, you might well hear CMPD talking to an agency on conventional VHF via a system interface, or two trunked systems linked for operability, etc. Maybe CMPD linked with the Viper system or Palnet, so even linked to the Hickory EDACS system.


Jeff Multer
 

qball

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Usually, when one of the interconnection (inter-op) devices is used, the attached radios are simplex. One of the biggest misconceptions about the devices is that you can tie multiple systems together and actually make it work. The use of these things is not magical as some (salespeople) would have you think. A huge amount of planning must take place before one of those things should ever be attached to a radio.

Tomorrow, the use of inter-op channels (i.e. ITACs, statewide LE/fire VHF, regional UHF) will be used in the simplex mode. There is a very large document that has been created with the grant that outlines the types of devices, where they are staged, and what channels they will be used on. This is the only way to make this thing work.

The counties participating are part of the urban planning area surrounding Charlotte (UASI). Part of this grant, in the near future, will link all of the participating counties' dispatch centers via a microwave. This will allow console to console patches using Motobridge in the 11 county area.

You'll have to be close to hear the tests tomorrow (simplex), but you will be able to hear coordination traffic on the Charlotte trunked system.
 

Grog

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I take it that's what they tried to use when the President came to Gastonia, when they patched events TGs to conventional UHF freqs in Gaston. I'll be working dayshift tomorrow, so I'll see what I can hear in Gaston County.
 

qball

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Something similar....Gaston County has and Raytheon ACU1000 on a command post. Charlotte has a RIOS. Both are big, fancy, VOX audio switches with PTT and some audio delay built in.
 

kg4pbd

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Interesting excercise. The mutual aid counties were patched onto the Char Meck TRS. At least that's what it sounded like. The squawk that precedees Gaston County PD's tx's were audible on the CharMeck TRS.

Fire was on Events 11, EMS - Events 12, and Police - Events 13. Events 14 & 16 were used for administration and coordination.

I never did hear anything on the conventional frequencies and ITAC but I'm probably too far away from the site.
 

pboy

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Was NC Emergency Management involved in this?

And was any encryption being used?

Reason I ask is I heard a couple of brief transmissions on VIPER Anderson Mtn. on TG 20064 NCOEMSSTSTAFF.

Thing is Uniden wouldn't decode the digital. Either it was encrypted, or something with site or scanner is whacko.
 

msigmon3306

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I went, I talked on my channel, it worked, I went back to work.

They're using a RIOS (?). NIMS is using Command, Ops, Logistics, Fire, EMS, and Law Branches. You check in using your county and disipline, check which frequency (simplex) you're supposed to use, give two radio checks and you're done.

We were second in line (I think). The EMS and Fire side worked very well, I'm not sure about Law. You have to remember to key up for about 2 seconds before transmitting or you'll clip your entire transmission.

But overall we're achieving the interoperability that we didn't have a year ago so much progress has been made.
 

KE4ZNR

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pboy said:
Was NC Emergency Management involved in this?

And was any encryption being used?

Reason I ask is I heard a couple of brief transmissions on VIPER Anderson Mtn. on TG 20064 NCOEMSSTSTAFF.

Thing is Uniden wouldn't decode the digital. Either it was encrypted, or something with site or scanner is whacko.
Hey pboy,
I think the use of NCOEMSSTAFF was unrelated to this exercise...they have been using this talkgroup to "test" out radios for a few weeks....Just FYI...I heard what your heard earlier today off the Wake County part of the system...
Happy Monitoring!
Marshall KE4ZNR
 

pboy

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Okay. Was a possiblity.

Do they use encryption?

I was thinking they didn't. Weird goings on with Anderson Mtn. site, then.

Hope this isn't some new controller software version that is going to plague VIPER scanning.

Really just think the site hasn't been tweaked for digital properly.
 

KE4ZNR

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pboy said:
Really just think the site hasn't been tweaked for digital properly.
Bingo...think that is the main issue...
pboy-don't know if you able to pick up the traffic but might want to listen to 20016 (SHPMWTECHD)...sounds like microwave dish problems towards western NC...
 

msigmon3306

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Emergency Management was helping with the drill but they weren't participating as "players".

I got information today that the Baker Mtn site is down for some reason. Don't know any more than that.
 

pboy

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KE4ZNR said:
Bingo...think that is the main issue...
pboy-don't know if you able to pick up the traffic but might want to listen to 20016 (SHPMWTECHD)...sounds like microwave dish problems towards western NC...
Getting off topic here, but I'll sneak another one in again.

No, the network has been quiet on this end (Hickory).

Maybe the reason is a problem.

Most of the time the techs seem to use cell phones anyway.

Always use the analog talkgroup. Wish they would talk on the digital just to see how all the sites are working.
 

pboy

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msigmon3306 said:
Emergency Management was helping with the drill but they weren't participating as "players".

I got information today that the Baker Mtn site is down for some reason. Don't know any more than that.
Getting back to the interopt drill.

Did they explain where all the radio voodoo was taking place?

What was the hub for all the interconnects?
 

Newshound

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CMPD/CFD had their new mobile radio command center out there. It is a semi trailer with it's own tower. The range is about 7 miles. Part of the drill was to test this new command center.
I talked with on participant this afternoon, and he says it went well, but they still have some problems to work out.
 

msigmon3306

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Hey pboy, here's the answers to your questions in your PM:

First, once they got moving they moved us along pretty fast so I didn't get to see much. We drove up to the staging area, hopped in a golf cart and chauffered to the comms trailer and checked in, someone there told us to find a frequency from a "menu" (for lack of a better term) that we would have in our radios.

So, for us guys that still are on (and will stay on for a while) VHF, EMS and Rescue was 155.280 CSQ, Fire 154.280 CSQ. One of the small glitches was in Law Enforcement if I've got this right...apparently National Law Mutual Aid wasn't on the menu. One of our comms guys was there for Law Enforcement so he brought an extra walkie with Nat Law in it and they hooked it up to the RIOS. I listened in on 155.280 sitting in the parking lot of the Starlight Theater while waiting to be called up--we had an 800 radio with us and between my VHF mobile and the 800 radio I swear there was an almost 2 second delay between the two listening to the same transmission.

I have no idea what 800 talk groups these freqs were patched to but they were on the Mecklenburg TRS. I don't know what UHF freqs were used. As soon as we did our radio tests we were swarmed by cameras and reporters. OK, that's an experience in itself. I don't know if I saw Newshound or not, David Whisnant beat him to me and then someone else while I was trying to get back. Anyway, the next county was in line and ready to test so we hopped back on a golf cart, back to the staging area and went home.

But overall it worked. For what little I was there it was a well run exercise and produced good results.
 

kg4pbd

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I don't know if anyone has this answer here but I'm curious if the use of the events talkgroups was just for this excercise.

It would interesting to know if in the event of a real emergency the talkgroups used today (i.e. Event 11 - Fire) would be used in the same fashion.

I didn't hear any exercise related traffic on any of the usual mutual aid talkgroups.
 
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