State Rescue Freq.?

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bonus1331

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Was listening to an entrapment yesterday with Monroe Fire and they asked the on-scene command to turn to "state rescue" to communicate with the helo.
I show 154.28000 as "state fire", but don't have anything for "state rescue".
Anyone help?
Would it use a certain CTCSS by fire department or no code?
Thanks
 

milf

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As far as tone: CSQ Freq: 155.2800

Office of Emergency Medical Services

Frequency Description Mode
463.00000 Med 1 FM
463.02500 Med 2 FM
463.05000 Med 3 FM
463.07500 Med 4 FM
463.10000 Med 5 FM
463.12500 Med 6 FM
463.15000 Med 7 FM
463.17500 Med 8 FM
462.95000 Med 9 (Dispatch) FM
462.97500 Med 10 (State Calling) FM
155.28000 Statewide EMS/Rescue Calling FM
155.34000 Statewide Hospital Calling FM
 

scannerpro

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Well, I live in Johnston County NC and I think Goldsboro,NC (Wayne County) EMS is using that freq for dispatching their rescues. I could be wrong.
 

derekjmu

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some counties still do use it for EMS dispatching. Avery County is one of them. Counties that still use it for dispatch are usually ones that haven't changed their radio systems drastically in the last 10-20 years.

it still remains one of the most common VHF frequencies for EMS statewide, and in most parts of the country.

Every county in NC is assigned a PL tone for their respective county for both 155.280 & 155.340. Mecklenburg County is PL 91.5. Mecklenburg monitors both, but you have to encode a 91.5 PL for CMED to hear you. With a 3-site VHF simulcast system on those frequencies, open PL would require CMED to listen to a lot of patient reports to ERs on 340 and a lot of various traffic on 280.

and for on-scene mutual-aid comms, you can't beat VHF simplex with CSQ.

"everyone 'drop your PL' and get on the party-line !"
 

CCHLLM

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Yeah, what he said. 155.280 or "280" was designated as the state rescue mutual aid channel decades ago and was intended for use by rescue squads and medical centers as a common channel for working incidents, etc. It was never intended as a dispatch channel, however that has never stopped some comm centers from absolutely abusing the original intent.

Each county has a specific PL for use by their comm centers, and it usually coincides with the original local hospital provider emergency department's PL on "280". Few, if any EDs monitor any radio channels nowadays with the decoders in place and comm centers handling and directing and routing most traffic. The PL and "dial code" encoding/decoding systems that are used to get past the PL were installed by most users across the state as a self-defense measure of relief for the telecommunicators and ED staffs that had to monitor all the traffic when there was no PL or encoding.
 

bonus1331

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Appreciate the info. Will load the frequency in the radios. I know that CFD has a TG for the helos for LZ's. Never dawned on me until now how the UHF/VHF counties communicate with the medical helos.
Thanks
 

NCFireman11

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As Derekjmu mentioned, a lot of mountain counties use state rescue. What really sucks is if you don't have a scanner cabable of decoding tones, it just sounds like a mess. Avery, Mitchell, and McDowell (all of which are close to each other) all use state rescue for dispatching and my older scanners can't decode tone so it sounds awful trying to listen to "280". Luckily, these counties do not repeat state rescue, when I'm drivng through these counties with my handheld Pro-71 it isn't too bad of a problem.
 

milf

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Wait till all the new narrowband VHF stuff is adapted, then itll realy be fun!
 

CCHLLM

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155.160 is listed as National Search and Rescue Common frequency in several SAR comm databases, however the FCC hasn't officially placed any indication such as that on their own publications. That doesn't mean that it's not semi-officially recognized, and my experience as a SAR team comm officer leads me to believe it's rather widely accepted both on the user side and the official side.
 

CFP387

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Depending strictly on memory here, but isn't there a statewide mutual aid frequency still in use by some counties in North Carolina? I believe it's 47.5 MHz, but I'm not for sure.
 

msigmon3306

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When I first got into EMS (right after the surrender at Appamattox) virtually every county EMS I can think of was dispatched on 155.160, using different PL's. There was very little interference. Rescue Squads were dispatched on 155.280 (with different PL's) even though it was designated as statewide rescue mutual aid. By the mid-80's the county EMS's were moving to other dispatch frequencies because the interference on 160 was getting pretty bad even with the PL's. We would pick up a terrible hetrodyne on 160 when Lincoln and Catawba were dispatching at the same time.

It's true that some counties still use 280 as a dispatch frequency--we can pick up Avery county very well on 280 while we're on that frequency for whatever reason.

These days it's hard to get paramedics and other responders to understand how to "drop the PL". It would freak some of them out to have to use a dial encoder. Thank God for programmable radios--but even then it's hard to get them to actually switch to another county's 280 channel.

155.280 is being used more these days for what it was actually intended for. We used it extensively on the drownings on Lake Norman this summer with multiple agencies.

Interestingly, we just got an email from Med Center Air last week--the radio in their new chopper is only programmed with 155.280, 154.280, and Catawba County Fire 2 for scene calls in Catawba County even though we still occasionally use 160.
 

Grog

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msigmon3306 said:
Interestingly, we just got an email from Med Center Air last week--the radio in their new chopper is only programmed with 155.280, 154.280, and Catawba County Fire 2 for scene calls in Catawba County even though we still occasionally use 160.
Do your radios have their 155.325 freq programmed? I know most of the Lincoln County fire units are supposed to have it (per a programming sheet I have).
 

msigmon3306

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I can't remember what 155.325 is.....isn't that Med Center's VHF frequency? If it is, we've got it in all our radios and I've used it a couple of times to keep air ops traffic off which ever tac channel we're using.
 

w4rez

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msigmon3306 said:
When I first got into EMS (right after the surrender at Appamattox) virtually every county EMS I can think of was dispatched on 155.160, using different PL's. There was very little interference. Rescue Squads were dispatched on 155.280 (with different PL's) even though it was designated as statewide rescue mutual aid. By the mid-80's the county EMS's were moving to other dispatch frequencies because the interference on 160 was getting pretty bad even with the PL's. We would pick up a terrible hetrodyne on 160 when Lincoln and Catawba were dispatching at the same time.

It's true that some counties still use 280 as a dispatch frequency--we can pick up Avery county very well on 280 while we're on that frequency for whatever reason.

These days it's hard to get paramedics and other responders to understand how to "drop the PL". It would freak some of them out to have to use a dial encoder. Thank God for programmable radios--but even then it's hard to get them to actually switch to another county's 280 channel.

155.280 is being used more these days for what it was actually intended for. We used it extensively on the drownings on Lake Norman this summer with multiple agencies.

Interestingly, we just got an email from Med Center Air last week--the radio in their new chopper is only programmed with 155.280, 154.280, and Catawba County Fire 2 for scene calls in Catawba County even though we still occasionally use 160.

I recall the HEAR "rotary dial" system being still being used in places as late as the early 90's. I also stumbled upon some sort of official document in PDF format online that documented the use of UHF Med Channels (Med 8 and 10 I think) which still referred to a "HEAR" system but one that used DTMF.

I still occasionally hear hospital call-ins on 155.340 but these are becoming increasingly rare. I never hear anything on 155.280 although this appears to be used by many counties as a tactical frequency or as an alternative to 155.340.
 

pboy

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155.325 is used by MedCenter for incident dispatching and site coordination. Helos usually switch to a more workable mutual frequency on scene. As msigmon3306 mentions, it seems finding a common channel at some incidents can be a challenge.
 

w4rez

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pboy said:
155.325 is used by MedCenter for incident dispatching and site coordination. Helos usually switch to a more workable mutual frequency on scene. As msigmon3306 mentions, it seems finding a common channel at some incidents can be a challenge.
Yeah I suppose these days where an EMS crew might be on a UHF or trunked system it might be more of a challenge. Back in my days of EMS involvement 99% of the EMS crews had VHF radios and 100% of those had .340 in them. The 1% that was strictly UHF had the med channels.

It's kinda sad to see the decline in popularity of 155.340. It used to be especially interesting listening after a major MVA.
 

jeffmulter

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Sorry about not commenting sooner, but Union County's state rescue channel does employ a tone on transmit ... 103.5 hz.

Their "state fire" channel also has the same tone in place.

I do not know if the radios are set to receive carrier squelch, though. My understanding is that, sometimes, an agency still place a tone on the transmit end only, so that dispatch doesn't have to listen to the out-of-county traffic.

As mentioned, neighboring Mecklenberg County has used 155.280 / 91.5 for some rescue communications, and Anson County - bordering to the east of Union County - uses 155.280 / 141.3 for rescue comms.
 

msigmon3306

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W4REZ,
I'll bet the official document you found in PDF was the state dial code book, a rather obsolete document that the state Office of EMS puts out every year. They used to print it every year and mail it to the counties but they put it on-line a few years back to save printing costs.

When we HAD to use dial encoders back in the late 70's and early 80's it was an essential document on every ambulance. When transporting to another county it was necessary to put your radio on .340 and dial a 7 digit number (1-5050-22 was Valdese General if I remember correctly) to open the PL and it didn't always work.

The MED 8 and MED 10 stuff that you found is the new and improved North Carolina Medical Communications Network. The communications wizard at OEMS revamped it and updated the equipment for it and it is used by Public Health agencies and State Medical Assistance Teams to communicate. The DTMF tones activate repeaters and ACU 1000's which allow these teams to communicate statewide. I've talked to the OEMS office in Raleigh from our station on Highway 16 north. Hospitals were provided with nice Zetron remotes to be connected with this system also.

Another thing that's been done in our area where 155.280 is concerned--all counties surrounding Catawba have agreed to put 280 CSQ in their radios as a quick and dirty interoperability measure. It's a lot easier to switch to this channel than to teach the guys which button on the walkie "drops the PL".

On those rare occasions that I get to work on an ambulance I always use 340 for hospital call in's--just an old habit. I've also programmed MDC 1200 on 340 in all our radios. Drives the hospital personnel nuts.
 
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