Friday, June 16, 2006

I Fully Support This...

Board to consider radio upgrades
By Jim Collar of The Northwestern
The Winnebago County Board of Supervisors Tuesday will consider whether to spend $400,000 for the first phase toward modernizing the county's emergency radio infrastructure.

While officials acknowledged the high price tag comes in a difficult budget environment, they argue the upgrades are becoming increasingly necessary for effective service.

According to the resolution, money sought Tuesday would primarily cover design and engineering costs of a project that would eventually allow emergency workers to hear radio transmissions on a countywide scale.

Sheriff Michael Brooks said that the federal government will require all jurisdictions to change to narrow band frequencies by 2011. The change will mean decreased distances for radio transmissions. In the current system, emergency responders already have some difficulty receiving communications through their radios depending on their location.

Right now, dispatchers can only send messages to a single tower. If a volunteer firefighter were out of range of the tower, he or she wouldn't get the message.

Read the rest here.


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