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Monday, October 31, 2011

Radio Switchover Date Nears for PGFD

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930

The Prince George’s County Fire/Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Department is very close to switching over to the County’s upgraded radio system. Over the past several months Fire/EMS apparatus have had the new radios installed and portable radios distributed to stations and support personnel. The Fire/EMS Department has been simulcasting over both the old and new frequencies during the transition period and this practice will cease at switchover. The Fire/EMS main dispatch channel will be the only channel that can be monitored on conventional scanners on VHF 155.685. The Department will soon join our public safety partners that have been operating on the new radio system for over a year. The total switchover to the 700 MHZ public safety communications radio system is anticipated to occur on November 7, 2011.

Monitoring of the 700 MHZ frequencies is capable only on a GRE PSR-800 scanner that is available at select retailers. Please keep in mind that this not an endorsement of this particular scanner, however, it is the only commercially available scanner capable of monitoring our new frequencies.

The 700 MHZ radio system and public safety communications are part of the County Office of Homeland Security. Prince George's County Public Safety Communications Center (PSC) is the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for Prince Georges County. This means that all 911 calls in Prince Georges County are routed to the center for dispatching of proper emergency personnel. PSC consists of approximately 190 authorized personnel that are responsible for all aspects including call taking, dispatching, technical support, radio system, and personnel functions.