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Fire Association gets grant

August 16, 2011

The LeFlore County Fire
Fighters Association
(LCFA) has received a grant
from Homeland Securities
Assistance to Firefighters
Grant program (AFG). In a
Regional grant submitted
by host Post Mountain Fire
Department, the LCFA was
granted $159,000 to purchase
414 handheld and 116
mobile radios. Each department
will receive 15 handhelds
and 4 mobiles with
the host receiving 9 handhelds
. All 28 fire departments
in LeFlore county
agreed to be a part of the
grant which was submitted
in May of 2010. Each fire
department had to submit
run reports, number of firefighters,
types of apparatus
and financial information in
order to process the grant.
This grant was an excellent
show of teamwork by all
LeFlore County Fire departments.
The 10 percent
match of $15,900 for this
grant will be divided among
all 28 departments in the
amount of $567.86 each.
Even this amount in the
past would have created a
burden to some departments
without the new 1/4 sales
tax approved by voters last
July.
In the year 2013 the FCC
‘s narrow banding mandate
will take effect and some
departments were not going
to have equipment that
would have been compliant.
This mandate states On
January 1, 2013, all public
safety and business industrial
land mobile radio systems
operating in the 150-
512 MHz radio bands must
cease operating using 25
kHz efficiency technology,
and begin operating using
at least 12.5 kHz efficiency
technology. Radios will
have to both send and
receive their transmission
in narrowband to be compliant.
Emergency Manager
Micheal Davidson and
LeFlore County 911 have
updated all county FCC
licensed frequencies to be
narrowband compliant and
are improving communications
with new repeaters
and common paging channels.
With the improvements
of these channels
departments will have to
reprogram existing radios
that are narrowband compliant.
The new grant
approved equipment will
come complete with those paging channels already
included. Due to funding
shortfalls in the past some
departments have been
operating with an insufficient
amount of radios.
Until now, fire departments
have operated with no
Standard Operation
Procedure (SOP) for communications.
Each fire
department's radios were
programmed with various
titles and frequencies making
multi-jurisdictional
communications complicated
at the least. Through the
County Fire Association
meetings all departments
have had a say in the the
entire process from the new
communications SOP to
choosing the radios. There
was some difficulty in meeting
the Oklahoma State
C o m m u n i c a t i o n s
Interoperability Plan .
(OSCIP) The addition of the
12 character display had
vendors scurrying to find
state compliant radios within
the grants budget. The
state plan also includes common
frequencies that function
as mutual aid channels
and running incident command
from the smallest to
the largest incident and
across state lines.
Installation of the mobiles
has already begun and deficiencies
in other equipment
are being addressed as well.
Handhelds should be distributed
in August .

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