EQUIPMENT WE USE
Types of Radio Equipment Used
This each team operates on four types of radio communications when in operation at an event or search, and although there must be some sort of control of channels and procedures, and as part Monitoring Service Great Britain (MSGB), it is kept as simple and straight forward as possible.
MSGB do not operate “base stations”, but do operate an “event control”, usually close to the scene of each event or search, usually in a larger vehicle, a church or community hall, or perhaps a member’s home. A laid back approach in radio procedure has been found more worthwhile, as long as call signs are used at the beginning of a conversation to identify who is talking to whom, then everything should operate smoothly.
Type 1 - UK Citizens Band Radio (CBR)
For operational use MSGB will operate ONLY on the United Kingdom CBR channels, and as no licence is required, this service could be widely used. Because of its possible range on some days, this will be used for inter site use if possible, an example conversing with another control station a few miles away, or working with a non MSGB organisation.
The channels we will most likely operate on will be 5, 10, 25, 30 and 35. These spread across the UK CBR frequencies to avoid the most commonly used channels, and also to prevent as much interference from other CBR transceivers in operation at the event.
Type 2 – PMR446
These licence free radios are probably the most useful in that as they are often the cheapest to purchase and operate
Most of these radios have eight channels, and for use at an event MSGB have decided that no tone or encoding be used. This allowing maximum range from each radio, and avoiding confusion amongst members.
The channels on PMR446 will be used as follows:
Ch. 1 Event Control (Primary)
Ch. 8 Event Control (Secondary)
Ch.2 to Ch.7 to be allocated at the event planning stage
Type 3 - Professional Radio Communications
These radios operate on licenced radio frequencies, and at present we operate on the authority of our National Technical Manager’s licence.
As of later in 2016 we will be using a United Kingdom and Irish Republic wide digital network, very similar to that used by the UK "999 Services"
Type 4 - Mobile GSM Phones
Most members have a mobile phone and these are often very handy when dealing with a sensitive issue