EMT gives non EMT scanner. Who's at fault?

LightItUp98

Forum Probie
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So an EMT gives a non EMT on the squad a scanner/radio (baofeng) just to listen to calls and is told to never talk over it or press any button except for the power/volume knob. Keep in mind that these radios are completely legal to own and obtain, and can be purchased online for $30. It is only when you transmit that you need a license. That non EMT (unlicensed) ends up calling in with it using an unassigned number (therefore identifying himself as an EMT) when he sees an MVA happen in front of him in town, stating that multiple ambulances were needed. Dispatch obviously realizes that the radio calling in is unidentifiable and unregistered, and contacts the squad just to make sure that isn't one of our radios. Who is at fault here? The member who gave the non EMT the radio, or the non EMT himself?
 

luke_31

Forum Asst. Chief
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If the radio belongs to the squad then the EMT. if not then the non-EMT. But overall this sounds like a reason why squad members shouldn't be giving radios to those not authorized to have them
 
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LightItUp98

Forum Probie
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To clear any confusion, it was the EMT's personal scanner that he bought himself. Not squad property.
 

Chris07

Competent in Incompetence
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It's not really a scanner if you can transmit over it.
I think both parties are at fault, although I think the EMT is in bigger trouble.

1. The non-EMT is in trouble for transmitting on an unauthorized frequency...however that's the FCC's problem to deal with. The Squad can only report it, unless of course he really interfered with squad communications.

2. The EMT was dumb enough to give a fully transmit capable scanner to a non-member. That's like giving a loaded gun to someone and saying "don't ever use it even if your life is in danger." At the very least he should have disabled the transmit ability on the frequencies in question.

3. Why on earth did the EMT feel so inclined to give this guy a non-scanner? Can't homeboy go out and buy his own $30 scanner? The frequencies are not a secret and listening in is perfectly legal, but why did the EMT put himself in this position?

4. If only one person gets in trouble it will be the EMT since it's the first person the squad can get their hands on.
 

squirrel15

Forum Captain
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That's a portable radio not a scanner. And I don't think you can buy that for $30 anywhere. Was this non-emt on an ambulance at the time or driving somewhere in his POV on his own time? If its the latter there is nothing anyone can get in trouble with outside of the FCC starting an investigation.

ETA how would dispatch know what squad to contact after hearing a fake unit number and the radio being unassigned?
 
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LightItUp98

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It's not really a scanner if you can transmit over it.
I think both parties are at fault, although I think the EMT is in bigger trouble.

1. The non-EMT is in trouble for transmitting on an unauthorized frequency...however that's the FCC's problem to deal with. The Squad can only report it, unless of course he really interfered with squad communications.

2. The EMT was dumb enough to give a fully transmit capable scanner to a non-member. That's like giving a loaded gun to someone and saying "don't ever use it even if your life is in danger." At the very least he should have disabled the transmit ability on the frequencies in question.

3. Why on earth did the EMT feel so inclined to give this guy a non-scanner? Can't homeboy go out and buy his own $30 scanner? The frequencies are not a secret and listening in is perfectly legal, but why did the EMT put himself in this position?

4. If only one person gets in trouble it will be the EMT since it's the first person the squad can get their hands on.
The transmit function was in fact disabled. The non EMT reprogrammed it back to be able to transmit. Also, I would think that the EMT would not be at fault since it is not his radio anymore. It is now the non EMT's personal property. Therefore anything that happens with the radio causes the non EMT to be at fault.
 

Ewok Jerky

PA-C
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Radio interference is the FCCs jurisdiction.

Was this radio personal property the whole time? Or did it once belong to the squad.

This is honestly more confusing than it needs to be. Is anyone even actually in trouble for this?
 

triemal04

Forum Deputy Chief
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I have a very easy solution for you. There are 3 possibilities, and all will be resolved by the same action.

1) You're going to be in trouble and he's not.
2) Both of you are going to be in trouble.
3) Neither of you are going to be in trouble.

Only real action to take is to do the adult thing; take some responsibility for your actions, fess up and take whatever lumps are coming. Nobody here knows what your little squad does/doesn't do or what internal rules it has in place so asking for advice here is just putting off, and looking for a way to avoid, taking responsibility.
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
Community Leader
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It's not a scanner if someone is talking on it...
 

MMiz

I put the M in EMTLife
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As long as it's analog UHF or VHF you can easily buy a radio on Amazon or eBay for $30.

Both will likely be held responsible in the eyes of leadership. They understand that there is little standing in the way of the public broadcasting on their frequencies and want to hold the perpetrators responsible. Even if the EMT only provided the frequencies and didn't enable the transmit, it doesn't matter. Management sees that someone committed a wrong and the EMT had something to do with it.
 

CALEMT

The Other Guy/ Paramaybe?
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How has AnamNYC not chimed in on this topic yet?
He's probably the one that keyed up...

For the OP, I would say both. The EMT should have know better then to give someone a radio that is unlicensed by the FCC. Also the non EMT should have had the common sense to not key up the radio and use it for scanning only, what he should have done is call 911 and report it that way.
 

WildlandEMT89

Forum Lieutenant
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If I were the supervisor the EMT would be disciplined for providing company frequencies and access without authorization and the non-EMT would be disciplined for unauthorized access of company frequencies.
If this were a first infraction discipline would probably consist of some education on why this is inappropriate and what could happen if the FCC were to get involved.

Isn't there a whole section in EMT training about communications?
 

exodus

Forum Deputy Chief
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If I were the supervisor the EMT would be disciplined for providing company frequencies and access without authorization and the non-EMT would be disciplined for unauthorized access of company frequencies.
If this were a first infraction discipline would probably consist of some education on why this is inappropriate and what could happen if the FCC were to get involved.

Isn't there a whole section in EMT training about communications?
Except the frequencies are all public domain.
 

Akulahawk

EMT-P/ED RN
Community Leader
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Frequencies yes, privacy tones and keys are not.
With very little effort, it's easily possible to determine not only input frequencies, but also input "tones" as those "tones" (analog or digital) are also very much standardized. The "key" needed to decode secure (scrambled) communications is not public domain stuff.

The primary responsibility to NOT transmit on an unauthorized frequency is upon the person pressing the "transmit" button. I'm a Ham operator. I have authorization to transmit on certain frequencies. If I transmit outside those frequencies, then I'm at risk for being prosecuted by the FCC for it.
 

Jim37F

Forum Deputy Chief
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If the non-EMT wanted to listen in, why didn't they just download any of the dozens of free smart phone apps?
 

DesertMedic66

Forum Troll
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If the non-EMT wanted to listen in, why didn't they just download any of the dozens of free smart phone apps?
Apps don't cover all services. Our city fire departments are not on any off the apps I have seen nor is my ambulance company.
 

Uclabruin103

Forum Lieutenant
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Wtf is wrong with this country. The giver of the radio made made it made it so it can't transmit. Emt modified it so it can. Ummm how about hold the person who modified it accountable.

Might not of had a trunked system with system keys... maybe just old school vhf
 

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