Waterloo PD unit numbering?

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Premium Subscriber
Jan 3, 2005
Ok, I'm new to the Waterloo area this week. I was listening to Waterloo PD, Cedar Falls PD, and Blackhawk County sheriff.

Can someone explain to me the unit numbering so I know what agency is talking? So far, it sounds to me like all of those departments are dispatched through the sheriff's department? Is that true?

I'm used to cedar rapids where everybody had a 3 number PIN that they used, and the 1st number corresponded to the area of town they were in. or in marion, whenever they added new officers, they just gave them the next number inline, like it starts at 110, and the newest guy is 174. Now here, I keep hearing '7 paul 71' '6 george niner' and stuff like that. HELP!!!


Database Admin
Nov 29, 2001
Oelwein, Iowa
Law Enforcement:

1st Number - Department
1 - Dunkerton Police
2 - Evansdale Police
3 - Waterloo Police
4 - Gilbertville Police
5 - Cedar Falls Police
6 - Hudson Police
7 - Black Hawk County Sheriff
8 - La Porte city Police
9 - Tri County Drug Task Force

Middle Letter - Type of Unit
A - Administration
B - Bike Patrol Unit
C - Command Unit
D - Detective
E - East area unit
F - Foot Patrol Unit
G - General area unit
H - Horse Patrol
I - ID Unit (CSI)
J - Judicial Security
K - Supervisor
L - School Liaison
M - Motorcycle
N - North area unit
O - Downtown Patrol
P - Civil Deputy
Q - Police Chaplain
R - Reserve
S - South area unit
T - Transport/jail unit
U - Animal Control
V - Community Policing Unit
W - West Area Unit
X - Tactical Unit
Y - Directed Patrol
Z - Off Duty Unit

Third Number is unit number

Fire/Rescue Units:

First Number - Department
1 - Dunkerton Fire
2 - Evansdale Fire
3 - Waterloo Fire
4 - Gilbertville Fire
5 - Cedar Falls Fire
6 - Hudson Fire
8 - La Porte City Fire
9 - Raymond Fire

Last Two Numbers
01-10 Engines
11-19 Aerials and ladders
20-29 Administration/cars
30-39 Medics/ambulances
40-49 Rescue
50-59 Tankers
60-69 Brush
70-79 Boats
80-89 HAZMAT
90-99 Open

Yes everything is dispatched by the one dispatch center. This is all done on the Law 1 Ops talkgroup. Most days they break Waterloo PD off onto Law 2 Ops talkgroup once things get busy and they have enough dispatchers in. And each shift uses the same numbers....so sometimes you will hear them say "First shift 3S4" instead of the second shift unit with the same number.
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Premium Subscriber
Jan 3, 2005
Well, that came in handy tonight! Just got back from BHCSO, happened upon a drunk male, felony burglary in progress breaking into the Dollar General's front windows and doors, breaking the AC unit and smashing lights out, and WPD arrested him. Got to hear them headed my way on the scanner while i was on the phone with dispatch. 1000's in damage, felt good to catch a felony in progress :)
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