October 2014 Inbox
Monday, October 13, 2014 | Comments

Following are comments we’ve received from readers about recent online and print news and articles. If you’d like to comment on an article, email edit@RRMediaGroup.com.

In response to “FCC Releases Report on 9-1-1 Outage with NG 9-1-1 Transition Recommendations” from Oct. 21


The article is interesting in that the reliance on IP-based technologies is once again highlighted in the context of a failure. This seemingly endless stream of failures related to IP-based architectures from Project 25 (P25) to 9-1-1 services should give everyone pause.

That the FCC is arriving to save the day with best practices and government coercion should give everyone a warm and fuzzy. Let’s not forget that this is the same FCC that type accepted MOTOTRBO digital while simultaneously licensing adjacent channels in narrowband only to have the adjacent channels made unusable, thus causing millions of dollars in lost revenue to private system operators. Yep, the FCC is arriving to save the day — wonderful.

Norm Alexander



In response to “Squirrels Blamed for Verizon 9-1-1 Outage” from Oct. 10


It appears that squirrels also like Verizon equipment. Well, welcome to the Verizon Restaurant, boys.

Sorry, just couldn't pass that one up!

John Cartwright, WA8LGM, WQTZ773
North Olmsted, Ohio



In response to “App Market Heats Up” in the October issue of MissionCritical Communications


I wanted to reach out and commend you for the article on how the app market is heating up. Having spent the better half of my career focused on connecting field level operations over networks and applications, I am happy to see the emerging coverage on real operations that are being changed due to broadband networks and applications. I posted a blog this week on the same topic that discusses how agencies will need to start looking at their field/tactical users now that the ability to connect and leverage apps is unfolding before them.

You may find the GeoSuite story interesting. It is the commercial adaptation to the highly recognized Tactical ground Reporting (TIGR) capability that was developed under the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and fielded to all brigades in the U.S. Army. There are more than 75,000 users in the military TIGR system today who have used the capability to collect and share information at the lowest level of patrol operations with their peers and superiors.

During the past couple years, the GeoSuite offering was created, by removing the military elements of TIGR and adapting the mature tool for use by public safety and urban search and rescue teams. Today, the capability is being used in fusion centers to aggregate and create a regional common operating picture across agencies. It is used to plan and execute the public-safety operations for some of the largest sporting and community events in the country. And, it has been used in major disaster response missions such as the F5 tornados in Moore, Oklahoma, and the fertilizer plant explosion in West Texas.

Richard C. Coupland, III
Vice President of Business Development, Public Safety
nFocus Solutions



In response to “JVCKenwood Releases Multi-Technology P25, NXDN Radio” from Oct. 14


This is really groundbreaking technology. This will assist the counties that go to NEXEDGE due to the cost of pure Project 25 (P25) radios, and they can still communicate with the P25 protocols when needed.

The construction is perfect for all emergency personnel, and it is small and compact. Well done Kenwood.

Leon van der Linde
Global Communications
Pretoria, South Africa



In response to “O’Brien: PDV Wants to Partner with Mobile Radio Businesses” from Oct. 13


I wonder if there are plans for the 931 MHz paging channels.

Larry Shaefer

Editor’s Note: Morgan O’Brien said Pacific DataVision (PDV) hasn’t evaluated the 931 MHz paging channels because the company is focused on the 935 – 940 MHz channels.



The Great Land Grab of 2014. I’d be just a bit less cynical if the red and yellow were equal sized after the proposed realignment.

George Potter
System Engineer
Axell Wireless



In response to “NPSTC Investigates Interference from LED, Fluorescent Lights” from Oct. 6


We have experienced a number of issues with LED flashlights and even LED traffic lights. When holding the LED flashlight near a portable radio, the radio becomes de-sensed, and the officer can’t hear other officers. We have also had complaints from motorists while stopped at an intersection with LED traffic lights. These lights also de-sense the AM-FM radio in the car. I believe it is because of the high current switching power supplies that these devices use. I certainly hope some kind of rules or standards that the manufacturers must follow to reduce electromagnetic interference (EMI) comes from this research.

Charles Kummer

Senior Wireless Systems Specialist
Wireless Communications Section
Oregon Dept. of Transportation
Salem, Oregon



Not only is the public-safety community receiving interference from some devices, but the rest of the business community experiences the same type of interference. My service van is equipped with CB, low band, high band, UHF radio equipment and AM/FM radio. I have received interference on AM, and low band with cellphone chargers, USB hubs and dash camera plug-in power supplies. I have also had AM interference in my family vehicle when using cell phone chargers and dash cam power supplies. It must be the power supplies that are changing 12 volts to 5 volts that radiate interference over a broad spectrum.

I service a fleet of concrete mixer trucks that are equipped with vehicle tracking systems that use the cellular data networks. Many of the vehicles suffer interference to their low band 43 MHz system, which makes voice communications reception very poor.

I have changed radios, relocated antennas, wrapped foil around some of the interconnect cables at times to reduce or eliminate the interference, and on others, no amount of trial and error gets rid of the interference. Some of the interference is traced to LCD displays in the tracking equipment, other interference is from the data bursts. One manufacturer did spray the inside of the plastic enclosures with conductive paint to reduce radiated noise.

I think that there needs to be testing of all these devices to ensure radiated broadband noise is at minimum. The influx of cheap imported power supply devices is what I believe to be a major source of interference and the lack of realistic testing of electronic equipment also contributes to sources of interference.

Gerald Marsh



MR16 12-volt LED lamps seem to be bad offenders. Models I have tested make noise to 400 MHz. At a home, this will prevent the garage door opener receiver from working, and interfere with over the air radio and TV. In public spaces, it will affect VHF two-way radio. Supposedly, the issue is worst with the MR16 due to there being no room in the lamp for inductive chokes and other RF suppression. 

Tony Komljan



In response to “Wheeler Highlights NG 9-1-1 Partnerships Between FCC, Sate and Locals” from Oct. 2


Thank you Mr. Chairman for raising the importance of next-generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1). Certainly, funding is essential to migrate our nation’s 9-1-1 systems into the 21st century. The role NG 9-1-1 plays in enabling better information-associated 9-1-1 calls will better serve the American public. In future planning, 9-1-1 and NG 9-1-1 must be considered as an essential critical infrastructure element.

Brian Fontes, CEO
National Emergency Number Association (NENA) — the 9-1-1 Association



In response to “London Met Police Extend Body-Worn Cameras Pilot” from Sept. 30


A step ... No ... a leap in the right direction!

Donald De Riggs



Click here for the September 2014 Inbox.
Click here for the July 2014 Inbox.
Click here for the June 2014 Inbox.



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