Emergency responders –police, fire and medical personnel –in Dauphin County are dispatched via a two-way Motorola Astro25 UHF Digital Trunked radio system. The dispatcher transmits the required information to field units by radio. As of January 1, 2012, Dauphin County no longer dispatches first responders using conventional analog radio frequencies. Individuals interested in monitoring police, fire and EMS dispatches will need to purchase a scanner meeting the following requirements:
- Ability to decode APCO Project 25 Digital Trunking
- Ability to monitor a frequency range 450-512 MHz
RadioReference.com contains system frequency and talk group information which will assist with programming a scanner. Switching to a digital trunked system has allowed all County departments and users to easily talk to each other to improve communications. The system also provides municipal and private talk groups for the users, which for several departments is something that was not available previously.
Many field responders have Mobile Data Computers (MDCs) in their vehicles to utilize the Mobile for Public Safety (MPS) system, which is an extension of the Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) system used by the telecommunicators. This MPS system can be used to dispatch calls to units without a voice transmission over the radio. Technology is employed to quickly and securely share information between the dispatchers and field responders.