What's that red button on the radio for?

MMiz

I put the M in EMTLife
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So what's that red button on the radio for?

I know it's a panic button of sorts, but what does it do when you push it? Does it transmit a voice prompt saying you need help? A panic alarm type thing?

I've only heard rumors, no real information.
 

Chimpie

Site Administrator
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All depends on the type of radio system you have. If it's on a trunking system, it will send a signal to all radios and the dispatcher showing your radio id, it may/may not send an alert tone, and it usually opens the mic for about 10-15 seconds. Some non-trunking radios it just opens the mic for 10-15 seconds. Some just make the radio beep.

Push it and find out. :ph34r:
 

daemonicusxx

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i took a field trip in high school to the Denton County Jail System, they all had the red button, actually orange colored on these radios. one of the officers was telling me about one time when she was sitting there at her post reading the news paper, she rested her elbows on her duty belt and accidentally activated the button. she said it was a matter of seconds and she had the entire S.O.R.T. team staring her down. S.O.R.T. is their version of SWAT geared towards the prison setting. i like telling stories i guess. im just retarded like that.

Jimmy
 

ma2va92

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It is the red panic button or the alert ......... on my handheld is a small button that is recessed in the case . that makes it a little bit harder to hit by accident. In the ambulances and response car it is a red triangle. No matter whether it is the handheld or the one in a vehicle . it will show up in dispatch as a emergency dispatch from and then it will show the radio identification number. Dispatch will call to that radio , twice . if there is no reply that squad will be toned out on our pagers dispatch will request . any information about the handheld radio or vehicle to contact dispatch immediately
in the vehicles . it is a little bit easier to be hit by accident if a clipboard was placed on the center console the panic button may be activated . as far as the handheld radios go . the fact that the button is recessed reduces the risk of accidental activation.
If a handheld or a vehicle panic button has been activated it will show up on everyone's radio no matter what squad they are with, it will show up as emergency alert
I can see where they would be of help when there is more than one person - but if one person activates the handheld . no one knows where they are , unless they are able to verbalize over the radio . the situation and the location wouldn't GPS be a wonderful thing in this position . when in a controlled environment , you would know exactly where the person is .
I have to say my handheld with activated onetime
I had the radio on my belt and I was in the barn working with the miniature horses that I had my little stallion had a habit of grabbing any tools on your belt and pulling on them and then running . It was his way of playing so he grabbed the radio bit down on the radio in such a way that he chipped the case and hit the panic button. Needless to say it was laughs and giggles at dispatch . what I call them back and told them that the horse did it.
This is the type of system that is used with the rescue squads
 

Jon

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On the county's 800mhz radio system, it switches and LOCKS the radio onto the "emergency" channel (The lock can only be released by the dispatcher). It also transmits the radio's ID to Dispatch.

The county has 2 different systems. 1 is with the 800mhz system, and the other is part of the MDT/MDC system. Same system is used by both PD and FD.

On the MDC- same thing.... sends the unit number to dispatch.


All officers who are issued portables have their radios "assigned" to them in the dispatch system, so the ID comes up as "Capt05." If Portables are assigned to a vehicle and kept in a vehicle.... same thing. If the portable is a "unassigned" portable, it comes up as "port05XX"

I'm not 100% sure of the county policy on this, but I know that my sqaud had a crazy guy get loose in the back of the truck. the medic hit the panic button, and PD and FD Chief were made aware, and found the crew struggling with the patient along the road to the ED.


Part of it is common sense... if the radio used to call for help is assigned to an incident... if no response, all the cops in the area will go in on the call, and you will have enough beat-down power to go after a SWAT team :D .

If the station has no calls, and there is a distress call from a portable, the station will usually get a call, and whoever is OIC at present will speak with fireboard, and try to figure out who's button got hit, and where they are.




Along the lines of the correctional officer who hit their button and had the SWAT team show up..... Very likely, they had the officer on camera, and sent the team to her post, where she was on camera, assuming, until proving otherwise, that there was something that she needed backup for.

At my work, we have silent alarms at many of the desks. Policy is that the dispatcher will bring the desk up on camera, and call the officer, and ask yes/no questions as to what is going on. An officer is also sent to investigate.

If, on camera, any weapon is seen... the officer will not go in, and it wil likely escalate to a police matter. If there is no weapon seen, the officer will check the post and assist the officer who hit the alarm. The responding officer should be made aware of anything seen on camera.... as to fight, argurment, etc.

I know that if I ever need to use this, I WILL GET HELP. I also know that my dispatchers will not intentionally send me into a situation where I have an armed intruder.

Jon
 

SafetyPro2

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On our radios, it sends an alert onto one of the screens at our dispatch center. All of our radios are programmed such that they identify themselves to dispatch, both for normal and emergency use. For example, if you key your HT to talk, dispatch will see an identifier telling them that, say "RA41" (our ambulance) or "E41 Firefighter 1" (one of the riding positions on the engine) is talking to them.

When the red button is pressed, they'll see the same info, and will usually come on the main channel and say something like "E41, emergency signal received from officer radio". Most of the time, its an accidental activation and the officer will so inform dispatch, but if not, it tells us who's in trouble.
 
OP
MMiz

MMiz

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Originally posted by SafetyPro@Oct 24 2005, 12:41 PM
On our radios, it sends an alert onto one of the screens at our dispatch center. All of our radios are programmed such that they identify themselves to dispatch, both for normal and emergency use. For example, if you key your HT to talk, dispatch will see an identifier telling them that, say "RA41" (our ambulance) or "E41 Firefighter 1" (one of the riding positions on the engine) is talking to them.

When the red button is pressed, they'll see the same info, and will usually come on the main channel and say something like "E41, emergency signal received from officer radio". Most of the time, its an accidental activation and the officer will so inform dispatch, but if not, it tells us who's in trouble.
That's what I'd like to think happens, but I'm thinking on our radios it's just for decoration.
 

KEVD18

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as mentioned, this feature has a wide range of possible applications. some depts program this feature off of the radio. so go with the full assignment whereby not only the unit number, but a gps location is transmitted. all depends on how much the dept spent on the gear and what the boss wants it to be able to do
 

Strike3

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In our system, it keys the radio to open mic and shuts down the whole radio system, then everyone and their Mom comes running.. It's kind of a nice feeling actually. Just dont' do it by accident.
 

FFEMT1764

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In our system the red(orange) buttons are there for decoration, our communications coordinator feels they are NOT a feature he wants any radio to have and doesnt want his precious terminals to flash red screens and have an annoying alarm go off in the dispatch center...so he had the big M disconnect them on all PD,SO,FD,and EMS radios...hopefully our new EMS director will rectify this...and our many other radio systemproblems soon.

I own UHF and VHF radios. I have the HT-1250 U&Vhf and Saber 3 U&Vhf, as well as Spectras in my car...they all have Emergency features programmed into them, and they work...plus I also have the PTT unit ID in mine...and what the county doesnt service/program/own they cant control...guess thats why my FD and alot of county employees are buying their own radios....hmmmm....
 

Chimpie

Site Administrator
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Yeah, I program our chapter radios and we decided to not program our "red" buttons. Since many of our volunteers don't use the radios on a daily basis, sometimes they have a habit of pushing buttons until something works.
 

FFEMT1764

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So do volunteer firefighter newbies...thats why we try to give them the old minitor 2 pagers...

Chimpie, you dont happen to have programming software for the M1225 series do you??
 

FFEMT1764

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If ya come across it,let me know...my copy is not doing like it should, and of course since its over 1 yr old the big /\/\ wont even speak to me...
 

Jon

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My FD uses HT1000's, MT1000's, HT750's, and HT1250's - some have orange buttons, some don't. IF they do, it is usually totally disabled or will put the portable in "siren" mode - just starts yelping, no TX, just annoying noise for those near the portable.

The County issued portables and mobiles all have ID's - the mobiles are assigned to a unit/officer, and portables are assigned by station. If done right, the portables are ID'd in the system to each officer or unit where it is (CHF05 Portable, ENG055 Portable). At the Ambulance Co, we have a bank of portables, with some labeled for specific vehicles (I don't know if this is tracked by the county or not). Some are also "generic" station portables.

If the county knows what unit the portable is from, and can figure out where they are, when the red button is pushed, all the cops come running if you don't immediatly clear the alarm "properly" - involves use of a passcode to verify your status is OK to the County.

Also, when the red button is hit, it switches the radio to an "Emergency" channel and locks the radio on that channel. The county must clear the alarm before it will be regularly useable.

The MDC's in the ambualnce/police cars have panic buttons too, and they work the same as the panic button on the mobile radio - if the county has you statused as being somewhere, help comes.

Jon
 

FFEMT1764

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Oh Oh Jon has seen the old /\/\ radio's, the ones that worked after you dropped them, ran them over, drowned them in a drop tank....these newer radios suck! You get a 750 or 1250 wet, odds are it will need a good drying out and maybe a trip to /\/\ for repairs...my HT-600 was great- lost it on a wreck in the rain for 4 hours...found it after all the patients were gone...in a foot and a half of water in the storm drain- I picked it up, shook it off, and it worked like it was new-so sometimes older is better...B)
 

ResTech

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The "orange" button on the top of our new Motorola HT700 series radios are configured to switch from duplex(aka repeater) to simplex (aka talk-a-round). This is so we can communicate with other units or ourselves without the EOC hearing our communication.
 

FFEMT1764

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Your system has a repeater?!? We are un-repeater-able thanks to sharing the same freq with 6 other agencies in a 75 miles radius! Another fine example if the FCC at work
 

Chimpie

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FFEMT1764 said:
Your system has a repeater?!? We are un-repeater-able thanks to sharing the same freq with 6 other agencies in a 75 miles radius! Another fine example if the FCC at work
OMG. How do you get anything accomplished?

What other agencies are you sharing it with?
 

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