Standard Operating Procedure Ottawa Fire Services. Radio Communications Procedures- Revised

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1 Policy Standard Operating Procedure Ottawa Fire Services CLASSIFICATION # SOP CO Communication- Radio SUBJECT Radio Communications Procedures- Revised AUTHORITY Fire Chief Ottawa Fire Services (OFS) personnel in all Divisions and Districts throughout the Municipality of Ottawa must follow the OFS approved Radio Communication terminologies and procedures. Purpose To standardize terminology in order to promote uniform, clear and concise radio communications throughout OFS. Scope All personnel using OFS radio equipment. Procedure RULES Radio communications should be as clear and concise as possible. Approved methods for initiating radio traffic and approved terms shall be used each time a message is given. ACTIONS 1.0 Initiating and Sequencing of Radio Transmissions 1.1 When calling another radio the sequence will be: - Identify the radio being called, first - Identify the radio calling, second. To Example.. Pump 31, from. 2.0 Vehicle Identification - Radio From Dispatch 2.1 Vehicles and staff will be referred to on the two way radio by first stating the type of vehicle followed by the vehicle number. Refer to Attachment B for a complete listing of vehicle identification radio codes. Example: Pump 31, Car 6, Ladder 12, Tanker 61, Water Rescue Phonetic Alphabet Issue Date: October 24, 2001 Last Revision: June 28, 2004 Page 1 of 11 SOP CO Radio Communications Procedures- Revised

2 Standard Operating Procedure Ottawa Fire Services 3.1 Use the phonetic alphabet when it is essential to get accurate spelling, address information, or location transmitted and received without chance of error (see attachment C.). 4.0 Radio Communications Terminology 4.1 Use the OFS approved terminology in Attachment D when conducting radio communications. 4.2 Unacceptable verbiage i.e. OK, Roger, A-OK, Good will not be used 5.0 Vehicle Radio Identification 5.1 Use the OFS approved Vehicle Radio Identification in Attachment B when conducting radio communications. RESPONSIBILITIES Chief of Communications shall: Ensure all communications staff are properly trained in communications procedures; Monitor radio frequencies and call taking to ensure staff use appropriate terminology and procedures; Review procedures with staff on a regular basis and identify areas which require modification or improvement. OFS Officers and Supervisors shall: Ensure subordinates are trained in all new radio terminology and procedures; Monitor subordinates to ensure appropriate terminology and procedures are adhered to when using two-way radios. Attachments Attachment A Definitions Attachment B Vehicle Radio Identification Attachment C Phonetic Alphabet Attachment D Radio Communications Terminology References and Related Areas Of Interest SOP CO Radio Communications Procedures, Radio Checks - Revised Issue Date: October 24, 2001 Last Revision: June 28, 2004 Page 2 of 11 SOP CO Radio Communications Procedures- Revised

3 Standard Operating Procedure Ottawa Fire Services (Original signed by Fire Chief) R. Larabie Fire Chief, Ottawa Fire Services Branch Community and Protective Services City of Ottawa It is understood that this procedure may not address all circumstances. Conditions may exist that require some type of deviation by the Incident Commander. Decisions should always be based on experience, the safety of the public and the safety of Ottawa Fire Services personnel. Issue Date: October 24, 2001 Last Revision: June 28, 2004 Page 3 of 11 SOP CO Radio Communications Procedures- Revised

4 Acknowledgement ANI/ALI Audio Bandwidth Base Radio CAD Clear Text Communication Communication Centre Defensive Strategy Dispatch Radio Evacuation Signal GPS Interference Attachment A Definitions The act by which one operator signifies to another that a message has been received. Information captured by the 911 systems. Automatic Number Identifier/Automatic Location Identifier The voice component of a transmitted radio signal. A range of frequencies between two limits- usually upper and lower points. A radio assigned to a station or other stationary location. Acronym for Computer Aided Dispatch automates the call taking and dispatch process. Use of plain English in radio communication transmissions. No ten codes are used. The exchange of ideas and information that conveys an intended meaning in a form that is understood. Facility for receiving and processing emergency calls An exterior fire attack, with related support A combination radio receiver and transmitter used for dispatching emergency vehicles. Used for emergency evacuation of premises. (see evacuate) Global Positioning System Disruptive signals affecting radio transmissions e.g. Background noise, faulty equipment Mirror Transmission Dispatcher repeats verbatim, or echoes important transmissions Mobile Repeater Mobile Radio Monitor Radio Mutual Aid Frequency NiCad Battery Offensive Strategy OFM Channel Patch Used to boost radio transmissions A combination radio transmitter and receiver permanently installed in a vehicle. A fire station receive only radio / or a radio scanner. Common frequency, used by Fire Services at shared incidents Nickel Cadmium type of portable radio battery. An interior attack with related support Ontario Fire Marshall VHF radio channel common to most Ontario fire dept s. The action of connecting radio channels or talk groups

5 Phonetic Alphabet Portable Radio PIO PL Simplex Operation Simulcast Tactical Frequency Talk Around (T/A) Talk Group Alphabet devised by the International Civil Aviation Organization for use in radio telephone conversation in which a word is used phonetically in place of letters; e.g. A is Alpha, B is Bravo. A handheld combination radio transmitter and receiver Public Information Officer responsible for providing a regular place for the media to assemble and to provide complete and accurate information to them. Private Line. A means of sharing one radio frequency with multiple users but not interfering with each other. Communication utilizing a radio channel with only one frequency. Communication only possible in one direction at a time. Usually portable to portable. A trunking radio system that consists of more than one site where each site simultaneously broadcasts a voice message on the same channel frequency, providing greater range and a larger coverage area. Secondary or additional frequencies designated for use Direct radio to radio transmissions by operating in simplex mode A grouping of radios that communicate with each other.

6 Attachment B Vehicle Radio Identification Vehicle Radio Designation Vehicle I.D. Triple Combination Pumper, Pump Pump + Stn. (Pump 11) Elevating Device (all types) Ladder Ladder + Stn. (Ladder 11) Rescue Pumper Pump Pump + Stn. (Pump 11) Heavy Rescue Vehicle Rescue Rescue + Stn. (Rescue 10) Medium Rescue Vehicle Squad Squad + Stn (Squad 24) Light Rescue Vehicle Medic Medic + Stn (Medic 14) Pumper Tanker Pumper Tanker Pumper Tanker + Stn. (Pumper Tanker 11) Tanker Tanker Tanker + Stn (Tanker 12) Rehab Vehicle Rehab Rehab + Stn (Rehab 17) Tender Type of Tender (i.e. Hose Tender, Water Tender, Foam Tender etc.) (name of) Tender + Stn (i.e. Hose Tender 14) Command Vehicle Command Vehicle Command Vehicle + Stn Urban District Chiefs Vehicle Car (10, 20, 30, 40, 50) Car + designated number Rural Sector Chiefs Vehicle Car (60,70,80,90) Car + designated number Other Chiefs Vehicles Car (1 6) Car + designated number Safety Officer Safety Safety + number Maintenance Vehicle Maintenance Maintenance + number Haz-Mat Haz-Mat Haz-Mat + Stn (Haz-Mat 14) Boat, Trailer & Towing Vehicle Water Rescue Water Rescue + Stn (Water Rescue 12) Boat (in the water) Boat Boat + Stn. (Boat 12) Technical Rescue Tech Rescue Tech Rescue + Stn. (Tech Rescue 11) Brush Truck Brush Truck Brush Truck + Station

7 Attachment C Phonetic Alphabet Alpha Golf Mike Sierra Yankee Bravo Hotel November Tango Zulu Charlie India Oscar Uniform Delta Juliet Papa Victor Echo Kilo Quebec Whiskey Foxtrot Lima Romeo X-Ray

8 TERM/JARGON Acknowledge Affirmative Agent Application All Clear At Patient Available Back In Our District Back In Service Be Advised Call by Phone Clear Code Black Code Blue Code Blue 1 Code Yellow Code Red Command Command Post Confirm Correction Emergency Traffic Attachment D Radio Communications Terminology MEANING Confirm that you understand Means yes Primary search complete, no known victims remain inside. Responders with patient. Able to respond to new emergency response. Status of vehicles and equipment relating to maintenance. Used when mechanical repairs are completed and the unit is placed back in service, ready to respond. Prompt for a general delivery message. A pre-warning of information to follow. Used when an apparatus is leaving the scene. Obvious death Police required on scene ASAP, physical violence Police required on scene ASAP, weapons involved Scene not secure. Stage until authorized to proceed by Police, Dispatch, Ambulance, or Incident Commander. Do not respond to the scene directly or drive past en-route to the station. Strictly follow special response instructions if given. Firefighter Injured Refers to Incident Commander as the person, the functions, and the location of Command. Location where Command is situated, usually stationary in a vehicle or apparatus A recitation of a received message to verify the correct receipt of the information. Used when an error has been made in this transmission, the correct version is Repeated 3 Times. Used by anyone who needs to pass URGENT radio traffic; it is a request for other units to clear the radio waves for

9 En-route ETA Evacuate Fire Fighter Trapped Fire Showing Fully Involved Go Ahead an urgent message. On way to stated location (non-emergency) Estimated time of arrival. Repeated 3 Times. Dispatcher activates certain procedures and transmits evacuation order over the air. Self Explanatory Immediate entry and search activities are impossible for the involved area and victim survival is impossible. The effect of the fire is such that an All Clear for the involved area will not follow. Proceed with your message. How Do You Read? A request of radio signal strength and quality on a scale of 1 through 5 (see Readability) Loss Stopped Loud and Clear Mayday Message Received Mirror Transmission Negative Not Available Nothing Heard Nothing Showing No additional property loss will occur. Self-Explanatory. OFS approved language indication of radio signal strength and readability. Repeated 3 Times Used by any firefighter who becomes trapped, lost, injured, out of air, or any other emergency situation. Should state location/problem if possible. Message Understood When dispatcher required to repeat verbatim or echo important transmissions from units at an emergency Means No. Not able to respond to new emergency responses. Off the Air Will not be transmitting or receiving radio off. (e.g. Off the air at #2 Station) On Location On Portable On the Air A unit has arrived at incident. A person is reachable by portable radio. A department vehicle is mobile, out of the station and reachable by radio. Operational Frequency Routine frequency for area being served. Out of Service PAR Used when a unit is mechanically out of service Repeated 3 Times. Used to gain control of airwaves in order to

10 Priority One Priority Two Radio Silence Read Back conduct a Personnel Accountability Report (PAR). An emergency response A non-emergency response Repeated 3 times. Used by dispatch to control radio communications when overwhelmed and want to eliminate non-essential radio messages. Repeat (verbatim) transmission to verify accuracy (normally used to verify critical information) Readability Strength 1 Radio signal strength bad or unreadable. Readability Strength 2 Radio signal strength poor or readable only intermittently. Readability Strength 3 Radio signal strength fair or readable with difficulty. Readability Strength 4 Radio signal strength good or easily readable. Readability Strength 5 Radio signal strength excellent or perfectly readable. Responding Returning to Quarters Say Again Secondary Search Smoke Showing Stand by (3 meanings) Status Through the Roof Under Control Universal Precautions Unreadable Working Fire Used when a unit is en route to an incident. Repeat Message A complete, thorough search of the interior fire area after completing fire control, ventilation, and other required support activities. 1 - To remain immediately available. 2 - To clear the airwaves for a broadcast. 3 - Request for patience of radio user while information is sourced or other traffic managed Requesting information regarding availability, location, etc Fire that has gained sufficient head way and vented itself by burning a hole through the roof. Fire may not be completely extinguished but forward progress of the fire has been halted and is now controlled. Used to advise responding personnel that precautions are absolutely necessary. E.g. Patient known to have Hepatitis, AIDS etc. Used when signal received in not clear. Any time a hose line is used to combat a fire.

11 SOP#: SOP CO Radio Communications Procedures Revised A Platoon B Platoon Print Name Signature Print Name Signature C Platoon D Platoon Print Name Signature Print Name Signature (please sign after reading above noted SOP)

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