I was just wondering if anyone uses 10-codes over the radio or plain language. We are told to use plain language but the occasional 10-code comes out. Mainly it is the 10-4 or for situations with a death it is referred to as a 10-7 (out of service). Also whichever you use what are the pros and cons of it?


Views: 519

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Were about where you are... I was always taught to just use plain language when talking on the radio, however; we still use the 10-4 sometimes, we use the phrase "signal 9" to mean disregard. Some of the older guys still use em and its just something that us younger guys pick up on. The younger dispatchers really sound like they hate it when we use them.
Our county uses plain language over the air. It makes thing a little bit easier to understand on a fire scene and is great for interop. Of course you get the few codes that sneak their way in but hey, it happens.
Our system uses plain text, mainly because we have the occasion to cross boundries and work with other systems so everyone understands what is being requested. The use of "10 codes" is fine except when there are different meanings for diffent codes. I found out early on in my career that there are many different sets of "10-Codes" out there and it can cause someone to be injured or worse if the incorrect code was used, besides it just makes sense to say what you want. I beleive there were several reasons for developing 10 Codes such as, back in the early days of two-way radios the reception and transmission qualities were not so good and with codes the message was clear, or the big one I heard as a kid was so that the common public would not understand what was being said. As with a lot of things I beleive that they have done there good, are no longer needed, and need to be abolished.
I seem to recall this debate a few years ago that with all the new federal regulations the 10 codes are suppose to be long gone. I work on an ambulance that services a town that still uses the 10 codes, dispatched by PD. I can honsetly say that not one time since i have been there have i used the codes and have always used english to show enroute or transporting. So much easier!!
Yo Gopher, This is my take. Its a copy of the one I gave Dave on 3/15. When "Smart Talk" came about some twenty years ago ( I think it was LA and /or Phoenix) it replaced the old Motorola military 10-Code. 10-code was developed to fool others about the conversation and to allow soldiers a necessary brief pause ("10") so the old unreliable equipment could catch up with the sender after the mic button was depressed. No longer required. Today everyone who wants one has a scanner and a copy of whatever code they may need. In this county "Smart Talk" was picked up almost as soon as it was introduced and has been the best thing that has happened to communications. Its all about saying what you mean. Teaching a code to people so they can try to remember what number to use so they can send it to someone else in the hope the reciever can decode it and pass it on accurately is not only antiquated but quite possibly dangerous. 10-codes served us well. Today they should go the way of the Chem-Ox Rebreather and the rubber coat. (10-4, for OK and understood, does seem to be the acceptable exception) Keep The Faith. You never go in alone.
This has been posted many times. And Dave answered it right..... the 10 codes are to (10-7) be gone.

We don't use them. Much easier with so many different meanings.

Yet many FD & Police organizations still use them. Many organizations have yet to adapt.

With the new NIMS, plain terminology/language is so much easier and makes life better. With every Chief having an assigned number, the officers and equipment...........heck you can get really confused at the big one if you only hear part of a number.

What if your Station 10? Your engines are 1-6, Tankers are 10-15, Utility 1011, Air Support 1019 , Forestry Truck 1022, see the problem? Every state, county and local district has there one unique numbering system for equipment and officers. Take away the 10 codes and it's easier.

It may change in the near future but not with out a strict mandate or enforcement.

Stay safe, train often and share knowledge.
No 10 codes here we use plain text english at our Dept.
Thanks for all the feedback so far. I keep thinking of more 10-codes that we use quite often. 10-22 for a cancel. And 90% of the time when the ambulance is paged it is a 10-55 and not an ambulance. Wrecks are commonly referred to as a 10-44 or a 10-45 depending on with or without injury. I guess that the hardest part about trying to get away from them is that every other non-fire/ems agency still uses 10-codes. So in order to communicate with them you have to have a basic understanding of the 10-codes for this area.

Here they refer to the ambulance as a 10-55, which I have seen on some 10-codes to mean a drowning. If anyone from that area has a scanner I bet that they might be wondering where all these drownings are at! lol

Its hard enough whenever you get multiple agencies on one scene with people using their personnel numbers and each agency's truck numbers meaning something different. We tried to renumber trucks county wide so that it would lessen the confusion but like always that involved change and some just don't know how to handle change.

Per Nims the national standard is plain English, not 10-codes. Different codes mean different things all over the country. This is to try to make thing less confusing.
We use mainly plain English or plain text, whatever you want to call it. We still use a few 10 codes every now and then (darn old timers!!!!...like me)...10-4, meaning ok, or I acknowledge..10-20...whats your location. For the most part they are all gone though. Not a bad thing. I was in the military and we used the standard "10's", then the police department used a whole different set, my vollie company used another set and when I got to a paid department they used yet another set....Im all in favor of plain ENGLISH!
Of course my department hired a firefighter whose first language was spanish and he asked if we could give certain codes out en espanol (??????)

Reply to Discussion


Find Members Fast

Or Name, Dept, Keyword
Invite Your Friends
Not a Member? Join Now

© 2022   Created by Firefighter Nation WebChief.   Powered by

Badges  |  Contact Firefighter Nation  |  Terms of Service