In the Department I belong to give two way radios to all the line offers, and any firefighter that would like to have a two way radio only needs to get pemision from the Chief, and he, or she can purchase their own, and the department will program it for you. When we use the radio, our call sign is our ID number. I must say it works well within our Department. How do other departments feel about the uses of radio's?

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Good heavens every member should not be calling into 911, our dept has its own repeater and we use that to communiate to each other and what equipment we are picking up. Works very well and we stay off 911 central freq. Only officers report to 911 unless they are not avaiable. Trucks check in when going ito service.

We continue to get more radios in the hands of members with proper instruction.
Wayne places are different and for different reasons. Here where I live now we only check into 911 if we are going to get a truck. First truck in route checks in the rest of the trucks and responding units check in to the first responding truck. Where I used to live in NC they had every member check in to 911 their reasoning being that if you were in an accident you were shown enroute and medical treatment would be covered by the fire dept, or so I was told. Thank goodness I never had to test that particular theory.
The volunteer dept. that I belong to issues a portable radio to all of its members, so long as they meet certain criteria (certain number of trainings, work sessions, meetings, and that they are off probation). We started years ago. It is nice to have them, but I feel, in my own opinion, that it causes some un-needed radio traffic at times. But that is where the training comes in. We also carry some in the trucks incase some one needs one, or to loan out to other agancies during a large scale call.
Everyone on our department is issued a radio. When we are paged out we notify despatch who is in route. Nice to know how many is in route to scene and whether you need to get more help.
The call dept I used to be a part of had radios for all pack seats and the officers were all issued radios. If a member wanted to buy one and pay for it to be programmed that wasnt an issue. SOP was that only the officers were to talk on the portable unless a firefighter had pertinent information or needed to call a mayday. This way everyone had a radio just in case but it still kept the chatter to a minimum.
In my humble opinion, what you're talking about is an issue of radio discipline, not so much radio availability (using the radio versus having access to the radio). Having a radio doesn't mean you have to talk on it.
Under the Incident Command System, each group leader needs a portable while operating otherwise there is no way for them to do a PAR check as required. We dont issue to anybody other than officers...but there are spares on the truck to hand out at incidents to people needing them.
In the Netherlands, every firefighters has at least one radio, provided by the service. All officers and the chief of the every firetruck (I don't know how you call them) has two radio's.
the first truck on scene is numbered 110. The attack team 111 and 112. Support team: 113 and 114. two men crew from the ladder: 115 and 116. two men crew from resceutruck 117 and 118. Driver of firetruck 119.
The second truck is called 120. the attack team 121 and 122, and so on and on.

The first officer on scene is called 100. The first 4 firetrucks and support trucks are the 110, 120, 130 and 140. (the 100 platoon)
the second officer is called 200. the first 4 firetrucks and support trucks are the 210, 220, 230 an 240. (the 200 platoon)
The fire of rescue platoons will have an extra support platoon. The officer leading is called: 900
These three platoons are called a battalion. the battalion commander is called ALFA. When we have an operational battalion the officers are called Alfa 100, Alfa 200 and Alfa 900.

A second battalion is called Bravo and has the same line up.
third Charlie, and so on.....

In this way every firefighter all over Holland knows exactly his call sign during major incidents.
The chief of a firetruck has two radio's: one to talk to his crew and one to talk to his platoon officer
all officers has two radio's: one to talk to their truck chiefs and one to talk to the other officers.

Every battalion has their own mobile dispatch. Every battalion will have their own dispatch channel.
I hope I was able to make it clear how we work here in Holland. To us, communication is a high priority and well provided for by the service.

Gr. Wilbert
thats the only way we know we have a call is either our radio or pagers but most of us have radios
WE ARE A SMALL DEPT OF ABOUT 20 PERSONEL. ONLY THE 6 OFFICERS AND MYSELF HAVE RADIOS. WE HAVE 4 SPARES ON THE UTILITY TRUCK BUT THEY DONT GET USED MUCH SO THEY DONT USUALLY KEEP A CHARGE FOR LONG. WE ONLY HAVE 6 INTERIOR FIREFIGHTERS 4 OF WHICH HAVE RADIOS. PERSONALLY I THINK EVERY INTERIOR FF SHOULD BE CARRYING A RADIO. IF MY PARTNER AND I GET SEPERATED AND HE HAS NO RADIO AND GETS IN TROUBLE HE HAS NO WAY TO COMMUNICATE A MAYDAY. IS THE PRICE OF A RADIO WORTH A MANS LIFE ?
AS FAR AS RADIO CHATTER , WE ALL NEED TO POLICE OURSELVES AND USE SOME COMMON SENSE. YOU MESS UP AND YOU LOOSE YOUR RADIO ,THAT SIMPLE.

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