Common questions from and about Fire Police radio usage
1. Will it be possible to patch our FP to other counties FP? We will have communications with: Franklin, York, Cumberland, Frederick and Carroll Counties. Your new radios have the Frederick and Carroll Talkgroups already in them. Depending upon the incident and the availability of the fire police talkgroups in the other counties console, it is possible to patch the radios.
2. When the FP get called out and the fire department does not, will dispatch assign a FP ops talk group for this? Yes
3. Upon dispatch FP were marking up on old ch 5. Will we now mark up on the main FP talkgroup and then move to FP ops as assigned? I am attaching a document that addresses this question
4. Is it a correct statement that dispatch will monitor FP main but not the FP ops talkgroups? If this is true, will it be standard operations to use FP main to ask for resources, request law enforcement, or when we are in need of something? Again, addressed in attached document
5. Am I correct that when a box is cleared by fire police we will use FP main to notify dispatch of such? Yes
6. The companies that have traffic control vehicles (apparatus) will they respond on FIRE main and then move to FP ops as assigned? They will respond on Fire/EMS Dispatch like all the other fire equipment.
7. Mr Eline had commented about having the FP only dispatches announced more than one time, as they are now. Is this in the works with the transition to the new system. Mr Eline had also discussed a possible checking procedure for our staff. This would be similar to the law enforcement checks but not near as frequent. Maybe every 15 or 20 min. Has there been any discussion or decisions about this? This has not been established yet, but we will discuss at our next meeting.
800 MHz Radio System Operations in Adams County Version 1.1 Effective Date: November 24, 2015 Adams County 9-1-1 ADAMS COUNTY 800MHz Radio System
PURPOSE: The Adams County Department of Emergency Services, working in cooperation with the Adams County 800 MHz Radio Fleet Map committee developed a regional radio template to be used by all local emergency responders on the Adams County communications system. The following guidelines provide an overview of how departments are to use and interoperate this trunked radio system.
RESPONSIBILITY: It is the responsibility of each department to adopt and ensure compliance with these guidelines as they apply to each organization.
USER: Any person, entity, governmental body or organization which has communications equipment communicating on Adams County’s 800 MHz trunked radio system.
P25: APCO’s Project 25 standard for public safety digital trunked communications systems. APCO: Association of Public Safety Communications Officials.
TRUNKED RADIO SYSTEM: A specialized repeater system with one or more towers, and multiple frequencies. This allows communications over a virtually unlimited number of talk groups. A control channel communicates with all the radios on the system, working to conserve a limited number of radio frequencies and provide other advanced features to users.
OPERATIONS OR “OPS” TALK-GROUP: An assigned group on a trunked radio system. Specifically designated for incident communications, especially incidents with an Incident Command structure and/or incidents with the potential to escalate.
ZONE: A particular group (bank) of talk-groups.
COMMUNICATING: Radio transmissions should be prioritized and concise. It is critical to be familiar with the operation and position of all radio capabilities and controls. This familiarity will permit personnel to operate their radios in adverse conditions, even zero visibility. Be short and specific with radio messages. Know what you are going to say before transmitting. Choose precise terms to communicate the desired message as clearly and briefly as possible to minimize air time. Speak clearly and at a practical rate; not too fast, not to slow. Prioritize you messages. Do not use up valuable air time for unimportant messages and insignificant details. Do not interrupt conversations unless absolutely necessary. Listen before transmitting. Plain language radio messages should be used in preference to numerical codes to facilitate understanding.
NOTE: All new 800MHz radios are equipped to place your unit in a particular status i.e. “enroute”, “on scene”, etc. using the status buttons. We are advising not to use these status buttons until further notice. They are not interfaced with our CAD system as of yet. Units are to status themselves as normal, verbally.
FIRE/EMS Disp. (dispatch): All Fire and EMS units will be dispatched on this talk-group and go responding on this talk-group. After a unit goes responding, they will be given an operational talk-group assigned by the 9-1-1 Center.
F-OPS 2 and F-OPS 3 (locals): In general, these (2) talk-groups will be assigned for lower priority incidents such as minor vehicle accidents, Investigations, Miscellaneous, Utility/Wires, AFA’s etc. F-Ops 2 should be assigned first if available.
F-OPS 4 through F-OPS 12 (tactical): Ops 4 – Ops 12 are set in tactical groups and will be assigned for major incidents such as any type of large scale fire call or vehicle accident with entrapment, technical rescue, etc. For example; SAVES gets dispatched for a Commercial Bldg. fire. They are assigned OPS 4 with OPS 5 and OPS 6 left open in the event that the Incident Commander needs additional talk- groups for such things as Water Supply or an active MAY-DAY. The next large scale incident would be assigned OPS 7 with OPS 8 and OPS 9 left open and so on. When Fire is dispatched for Medical Assist calls assisting EMS with Class 1 patients, lifting, etc., the Fire unit responding will be assigned the same EMS talk- group that the EMS unit is on. NOTE: Talk-group assignments may be adjusted to meet the Incident Commander and/ or 9-1-1 Center needs.
EMS 2 and EMS 3: These will be used similar to our old Med 9. When an EMS unit goes responding on the Fire/EMS Disp. talk-group they will be assigned EMS 2 for patient information and all other related EMS radio traffic. EMS 3 will be used if EMS 2 gets overwhelmed with excessive radio traffic. EMS 2 will be the priority talk group. NOTE: EMS units should automatically switch over to EMS 2 after they are acknowledged responding on the Fire/EMS Disp. talk group for patient information unless otherwise assigned.
EMS 4 and EMS 5: EMS 4 and EMS 5 are 2 additional EMS talk-groups in the EMS bank. These two talk-groups are available in the event that EMS 2 and EMS 3 are committed and have heavy radio traffic. They can also be utilized for other EMS events. When dispatched on incidents running with Fire, EMS units will be assigned the same F-Ops talk-group that Fire is assigned. NOTE: EMS Units now have the capability to hail either Gettysburg or Hanover Hospitals from their portable radio to provide transport information.
Gettysburg ALS/BLS: Use the Gettysburg ALS or Gettysburg BLS talk-group to call the hospital and provided transport information. For example; “Ambulance 54-4 to Gettysburg Hospital for transport information; how do you copy”. Adams County will no longer establish patches to hospitals for the exception of out of County EMS units.
Hanover ALS/BLS: Use the Hanover ALS or Hanover BLS talk-group to call the hospital and provided transport information. For example; “Ambulance 54-4 to Hanover Hospital for transport information; how do you copy”. Adams County will no longer establish patches to hospitals for the exception of out of County EMS units. If you are unable to reach the Hospital contact the 9-1-1 Center and we will attempt from our console. If contact still cannot be made by radio, you may have to call by phone.
AC Aero 1/AC Aero 2: AC Aero 1 and AC Aero 2 are designated talk-groups for all helicopter aviation operations. When a helicopter is dispatched, Adams will assign either AC Aero 1 or AC Aero 2 to the dispatched helicopter. Adams will then proceed to patch the appropriate AC Aero talk-group into the operations talk- group that the LZ is operating off of.
FP Main: FP Main is the primary talk-group that Fire Police will go responding on. If they are responding on an incident with the Fire Department, the FP Unit should switch over to the corresponding FP-Ops talk-group that the fire incident is working off of.
FP –OPS 2 thru FP-OPS 12: These are designated talk-groups that correspond with the Fire Ops talk groups. For example; if there is a fire ground incident on Ops 4, Fire Police should be operating off of FP-Ops 4 for their operations. Any additional requests and/or information that Fire Police have should be directed to the Incident Commander on the fire ground Ops-talk group. During working incidents, the 9-1-1 Center may not be monitoring FP Ops talk groups due to heavy radio traffic on other talk groups. If Fire Police are dispatched for an incident that just require Fire Police only, the 91-1 Center will assign a FP-Ops-talk group for that particular incident. If a Fire Police unit has an emergency to relay to Adams County, the FP unit should switch to the FP Main talk-group and notify the 9-1-1 Center of the emergency.
FIRE TALK: Fire Talk is a talk-group that can be used by two or more agencies for such activities as joint trainings or events. It can also be used just to talk back and forth to each other.
EMS TALK: EMS Talk is a talk-group that can be used by two or more agencies for such activities as joint trainings or events. It can also be used just to talk back and forth to each other. Dept. Private: Dept. Private talk-groups will be named in each agencies radio by their name (i.e. Gburg Private, UH&L Private, etc.) a non-monitored private talk-group that each agency can use for communications within the respective agency.
VIPER: (Voice Interoperability for Public Emergency Radio) Voice Interoperability for Public Emergency Radio is a common talk-group that is in the same position on every radio on the system in the primary zone of all agencies that can be used for all radios to talk to each other for whatever reason. Emergency Button: The user is encouraged to push the Emergency Button when it is necessary to attract attention and/or become the priority user on the talk group. Examples of this include repeated unanswered calls to the Incident Commander in the event of an emergency or excessive radio traffic that prevents transmission of a life-ordeath message. Activating the Emergency Button will make the user the priority radio on the talk group and alert the 9-1-1 Center. (Please see the attached Fire / EMS / Fire Police Incident Mayday Declaration policy below).
Fire / EMS / Fire Police Incident Mayday Declaration Adams County will log any initial Mayday traffic in the Comments field of the CAD Incident. If Command does not immediately react to the Mayday call, Adams County will call Command and relay the Mayday traffic If needed due to unrelated traffic on the talk group, Adams County will intervene and announce “Attention units operating on Box XX address, clear the air for mayday transmissions”. All units not involved in the rescue operation switch to OpsXX DO NOT Clear the emergency activation, you may silence it Fire Fighter Actions – If a fire fighter is in distress or in need of assistance due to a life-threatening situation, the firefighter will activate the emergency button and transmit “Mayday-Mayday-Mayday” and provide a brief situational status report if possible using the following guidelines using the acronym LUNAR - L – Location U – Unit N – Name A – Assignment at time of Mayday R – Resources/Help needed The Emergency Responder shall then activate their Personal Alert Safety System device. Incident Command will communicate with the firefighter and initiate necessary actions.
TALK GROUP ASSIGNMENTS: Specific rescue operations will remain on the assigned operational talk group. Additional talk groups will be assigned as needed for Suppression activities to assure clear communications for any rescue operations. Only the incident commander can terminate the mayday situation. Upon conclusion of the situation, Command will notify Adams County and advise of updated talk group requirements. At that time, Adams County will clear the emergency signal from the system. Fire / EMS/ Fire Poilce Incident/Non Incident Activations that occur without a verbal transmission for help Activations during an incident that are not followed with a plea for help will be immediately checked by Adams County. “Unit Designation or Alias from Adams County, Confirm or Deny!” If contact is made, verify if an emergency is occurring and respond appropriately as the conditions require by either clearing the emergency or verifying Command has copied if an actual emergency is occurring. If no contact is made, Incident Command will be contacted. *****No Response is an automatic Confirm***** When advising a denial a reason must be provided. (Example: E11-1 Confirm or Deny. E11-1 Adams deny accidental activation.) Non Incident Fire Activations If a unit or portable activates the emergency button during a non dispatched event, the Com Center will do the following: Make radio contact with the unit to confirm the emergency.
“Unit Designation or Alias from Adams County Confirm or Deny!” If contact is made, verify if an emergency is occurring and respond appropriately as the conditions require. If no contact is made, the Com Center will page the unit and Notify the Chief of the unit if no contact is made. *****No Response is an automatic “Confirm”***** When advising a denial a reason must be provided. (Example: E11-1 Confirm or Deny. E11-1 Adams deny accidental activation.) Any activation that is non-incident related should be logged in CAD as a new incident using the Nature Code EMERGENCY and in the Location – Use ,FDXX in the Busn/Common Field
Talk Group Template Selector AC Fire AC Fire Police AC EMS 1 Fire/EMS Disp FP Main Fire/EMS Disp 2 Ops 2 FP Ops 2 EMS 2 3 Ops 3 FP Ops 3 EMS 3 4 Ops 4 FP Ops 4 EMS 4 5 Ops 5 FP Ops 5 EMS 5 6 Ops 6 FP Ops 6 EMS Talk 7 Ops 7 FP Ops 7 Hanover ALS 8 Ops 8 FP Ops 8 Hanover BLS 9 Ops 9 FP Ops 9 Gburg ALS 10 Ops 10 FP Ops 10 Gburg BLS 11 Ops 11 FP Ops 11 AC Aero 1 12 Ops 12 FP Ops 12 AC Aero 2 13 Fire Talk Fire Talk Fire Talk 14 Dept. Private Dept. Private Dept. Private 15 VIPER VIPER VIPER 16 Fire/EMS Disp Fire/EMS Disp Fire/EMS Disp
ATTENTION - AS OF JAN 9, 2012 ANY MEMBER WHO IS IN THE HOSPITAL OR PASSES AWAY WILL RECEIVE A MONETARY GIFT, NOT TO EXCEED $40, OR A FRUIT BASKET. ANY PERSON WHO ORDERS FLOWERS OR FRUIT WILL NEED TO PROVIDE A RECEIPT FOR THEIR EXPENSE. WE WILL NOT REIMBURSE ANY UNAUTHORIZED EXPEDITURES.
Please ask your member of Congress to Co-Sponsor the Fire Police Fairness Act (HR1348) Ask Congress to Protect Fire Police from Unfair Denial of Federal Line of Duty Death Benefit Take Action!
Let's Close the PSOB 'loophole' that exempts Fire Police - CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW
Ask Congress to Protect Fire Police from Unfair Denial of Federal Line of Duty Death Benefit! Many fire police in Pennsylvania and across the country have no coverage under the existing interpretation of PSOB legislation. Should the unspeakable happen benefits payable to the family of a fire police officer who dies in the line of duty could be denied. H.R. 1348 The Fire Police Fairness Act introduced by Congressman Joe Courtney of Connecticut corrects this inequity.Already Pennsylvania Congressmen Jim Gerlach and Glenn Thompson both longtime supporters of the fire service have co-sponsored this bill.Please contact your Member of Congress and ask that the he or she add their name as a co-sponsor. Without this important legislative fix Fire Police families could be excluded from a benefit that applies to everyone else in the fire service. Take action now before tragedy strikes
********CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO BECOME INVOLVED AND SHOW YOUR SUPPORT****
If you have a major state or township road in your first due area that you would like to suggest a posted detour for please bring them to the next meeting.
UPDATED INFORMATION - Fire police are not to use Fire 1 (Dispatch) unless it is a serious emergency. All communications with dispatch shall use Fire 5. If you are unable to contact them you may switch to Fire 4 then Fire 3. Please do not interfere with any other incident in progress.
The rules for apparatus radio use have not changed.