Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Scanning radio frequencies for Northern Ireland
Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 21 Mar 2016, 16:35

Hi there,

Anyone in Northern Irelnd know what the current St John Ambulance & British Red Cross frequencies are.

I am quite new to this so any help would be appreciated.

There is a lot of different frequencies floating around the net for St John & Red Cross which to my knowledge are UK general frequencies, but I was just wondering if anyone knew the specific frequencies used here in Northern Ireland. They are on VHF.

I have a motorola GP380 (VHF) and am getting a bit confused (maybe someone could help me out).

When I am programming the radio frequencies I understand that there is an option for CTCSS codes.

My couple of questions are, how do I find what the CTCSS is for a particular frequency (mostly I come across just the TX & RX and a bandwith - 12.5 for example beside the TX & RX)

If I do not put the CTCSS codes in (as they are not easy to find or advertised at times) can I still listen to transmissions on that particular frequency?

Sorry for all the questions, just trying to get my head around the CTCSS thing!!


Any advice appreciated, thanks. :D
Last edited by Medic1 on 21 Mar 2016, 19:24, edited 1 time in total.

paulears
Radio Addict
Radio Addict
Posts: 679
Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 22:41
Call Sign: G4RMT
Location: North East Suffolk
Contact:

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by paulears » 21 Mar 2016, 17:58

CTCSS can be ignored for receive only - as it's purpose is to STOP you hearing things not meant for you, rather than hearing everything! For other people to hear you when you transmit, you need to send the right tone, or they cannot hear you.

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 21 Mar 2016, 19:22

paulears wrote:CTCSS can be ignored for receive only - as it's purpose is to STOP you hearing things not meant for you, rather than hearing everything! For other people to hear you when you transmit, you need to send the right tone, or they cannot hear you.

Hi paulears,

Thank you for clearing that up for me, complete novice here. So, essentially if I just want to listen (without transmitting) I just enter the TX & RX and bandwith and DON'T bother entering CTCSS?!

Thanks :thumbup:

User avatar
Admiral
Legend
Legend
Posts: 9942
Joined: 08 Mar 2011, 21:20
Call Sign: 26TM157
Location: MK-UK

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Admiral » 22 Mar 2016, 13:09

Medic1 wrote:So, essentially if I just want to listen (without transmitting) I just enter the TX & RX and bandwith and DON'T bother entering CTCSS?!

Thanks :thumbup:
Correct, and if you're just earwigging on a transceiver then best to disable TX in the software or put in a TX frequency that you are licensed for or is not used near you and set to low power to save any PTT accidents.
Winner of the 2017 IBTL 'Summer Sizzler' competition

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 22 Mar 2016, 16:15

Admiral wrote:
Medic1 wrote:So, essentially if I just want to listen (without transmitting) I just enter the TX & RX and bandwith and DON'T bother entering CTCSS?!

Thanks :thumbup:
Correct, and if you're just earwigging on a transceiver then best to disable TX in the software or put in a TX frequency that you are licensed for or is not used near you and set to low power to save any PTT accidents.


Hello Admiral,

Thanks for the clarification, appreciated :thumbup: Is it possible to get a larger antenna (sorry do not know the technical names for this equipment) to improve reception and distance? I have a Motorola GP380 (VHF) from my understanding if I was to get some kind of larger antenna then the antenna would need to support VHF? Sorry if this question sounds a bit vague, just trying to piece things together.

Advice appreciated :thumbup:

paulears
Radio Addict
Radio Addict
Posts: 679
Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 22:41
Call Sign: G4RMT
Location: North East Suffolk
Contact:

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by paulears » 23 Mar 2016, 16:26

Indeed. You can buy wide band aerials - look for topics on things like discones, or you can buy a band specific aerial. These can also give you gain - usually measured against the performance of a dipole - the simplest aerial type. So 3dBd - is twice as good as a dipole. However - be aware that there is another type of gain figure which will be used in the format of 3dBi - 3dB more than an isotropic source - an imaginary aerial considered to be a 'point source'. Mathematically, a dipole has 2.15dB gain over this imaginary aerial type - so can be used to make an aerial look better in the specs.

In general, the size of a VHF dipole is quite small near 3 ft end to end. There are what stick designs that can give you perhaps 3-4dB gain over a dipole - meaning things a dipole cannot hear, will be there. Your radio inside the house will work better upstairs, it will work even better if you stand on the roof. An aerial, even a basic one will work better the higher you can get it.

It gets trickier when you have lots of aerials available, but some are more difficult to physically cope with. A discone aerial, in the loft, will work better than the little rubber duck type aerial on the radio in your kitchen. If you put the discone, which has no gain at all - as in 0dBd, on your chimney it might work better than a 3dBd aerial in the loft - or it might not, on a rainy wet day and the roof tiles are shielding the signal from getting through?

It's supposed to be science, but so many variables make it a bit of a gamble.

User avatar
Admiral
Legend
Legend
Posts: 9942
Joined: 08 Mar 2011, 21:20
Call Sign: 26TM157
Location: MK-UK

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Admiral » 23 Mar 2016, 17:01

What's the association between your handle and what you seek to listen to? (feel free to tell me to mind my own business).

Do you really need a professional transceiver? Seems a bit of a kerfuffle unless you plan on joining in the conversations. FM only handheld scanners can be bought for the price of a packet of fags these days, and would be far easier to scan around in unknown territory.
Winner of the 2017 IBTL 'Summer Sizzler' competition

User avatar
thelad
Top Poster
Top Poster
Posts: 1474
Joined: 30 Jan 2012, 20:45
Location: West Yorkshire

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by thelad » 23 Mar 2016, 18:24

I suspect Medic1 on here is the same user on the UK scanning forum going under the same username asking some rather strange questions about transmitting to St Johns Ambo and Red Cross but now he just wants to listen in? :crazy:

http://ukradioscanning.com/viewtopic.ph ... ic1#p22484
6th Post down the page.
Uniden UBC120XLT
Uniden USC230E
Uniden UBC3500XLT
Binatone PMR MR500 x2
Magiksun TM-490 (BF-888) x3
Baofeng BF-888
TTI TSC 100R
Baofeng UVB5
Zastone D900
Icom IC-R6

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 23 Mar 2016, 21:50

paulears wrote:Indeed. You can buy wide band aerials - look for topics on things like discones, or you can buy a band specific aerial. These can also give you gain - usually measured against the performance of a dipole - the simplest aerial type. So 3dBd - is twice as good as a dipole. However - be aware that there is another type of gain figure which will be used in the format of 3dBi - 3dB more than an isotropic source - an imaginary aerial considered to be a 'point source'. Mathematically, a dipole has 2.15dB gain over this imaginary aerial type - so can be used to make an aerial look better in the specs.

In general, the size of a VHF dipole is quite small near 3 ft end to end. There are what stick designs that can give you perhaps 3-4dB gain over a dipole - meaning things a dipole cannot hear, will be there. Your radio inside the house will work better upstairs, it will work even better if you stand on the roof. An aerial, even a basic one will work better the higher you can get it.

It gets trickier when you have lots of aerials available, but some are more difficult to physically cope with. A discone aerial, in the loft, will work better than the little rubber duck type aerial on the radio in your kitchen. If you put the discone, which has no gain at all - as in 0dBd, on your chimney it might work better than a 3dBd aerial in the loft - or it might not, on a rainy wet day and the roof tiles are shielding the signal from getting through?

It's supposed to be science, but so many variables make it a bit of a gamble.

Hi paulears,

Thanks for the advice and information, admittingly it went way over my head but I get the idea of the information and advice provided. It's a learning curve :thumbup:

Admiral wrote:What's the association between your handle and what you seek to listen to? (feel free to tell me to mind my own business).

Do you really need a professional transceiver? Seems a bit of a kerfuffle unless you plan on joining in the conversations. FM only handheld scanners can be bought for the price of a packet of fags these days, and would be far easier to scan around in unknown territory.
Hi Admiral,

Yes, sorry I possibly did not explain the situation clearly.

It is a cross over from the work I do and also an interest on an amatuer level of radio communications.

When not working at my main job I do freelance event medical cover with a team of others. Quite frequently when doing event work we will work alongside other organisations such as St John Ambulance, British Red Cross and Order of Malta Ambulance Corps to name a few.

Quite a few events we cover involve working with several of these providers at one event and they all have their own radio comms set up. There is a specific channel available for St John & British Red Cross to communicate together, however here in Northern Ireland I am yet to see this used (not sure how things operate between these organisations in the UK Mainland). This can be a bit of a nitemare as we then have to carry several radios provided to us by these other organisations. At some events there is a joint control room set-up but again this does not make things any easier.

The service I do freelance for has an agreement and written permission from each of these organisations for its staff to use their communications and vice versa (extends to us using a personal radio).

Our service has its own radio comms set-up also. So I am sure you can see the kerfuffle!! (Comms are services by an external company, we do not have a comms dept in our service).

We have been provided with a UK & ROI list list of these organisations frequencies which are also listed and publicly available on the Ofcom website, I posted some of these on a similar forum as pointed out by another forum user on here 'thelad'. Out of the many frequencies provided, only a few are allocated and used in Northern Ireland. I am still awaiting a respponse from our office in relation to which of these frequencies are specific to Northern Ireland. Whilst waiting on a response (which I can assure you will take a while!) I had posted on here and another forum 'Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies' as I assumed that there may well be individuals involved with RAYNET NI (The Radio Amateur's Emergency Network in Northern Ireland) who we would also work with at some events and who may also be forum users and possibly best placed to provide answers regards Northern Ireland specific frequencies, or individuals who are actually attached to these organisations, I guess if you don't ask then you will never know!

In my spare time I have a keen interest in radio communicaions and amatuer radio, just another hobby of mine.

As I mentioned on another forum (which 'thelad' referred to) I am going to do the amatuer radio foundation course to gain my licence and progress from there.

Although whilst doing freelance work at events we have permission to use other organisations comms equipment which also extends to comms belonging to our service (or personal radios that are programmed, but I guess in line with the agreement our personal radios can only be used when actually working at events and not be used at home as a hobby) that are in the process of being programmed with the the various frequencies of these organisations, I was trying to establish the legalities (if any) of getting these frequencies programmed into a couple of transceivers I have. I have also bought a Motorola GP380 which will be programmed with the frequencies and only used (as per the agreement) whilst carrying out work for our service alongside these other organisations. Yes, I could quite easily turn on the GP380 when I am at home and listen in, however I think this would be wrong as the GP380 will be used specifically for the event work and covered by the agreement between 'us' and other organisations. Technically I can only use the GP380 whilst on assignment at an event which we are providing services at as it is covered by our services licence.

Sorry this is a bit long-winded, just trying to make the situation a little more clearer, cross over between my work and a hobby. Trying to establish if I can or cannot programme these frequencies (Northern Ireland specific frequencies once confirmed) into one of my transceivers (which are much smaller and easier to carry than a GP380)...but not quite sure if this is allowed...it would make things a bit easier for me and I could also use the transceiver while I am not working at events.

A few grey areas...Our service uses an outside company to service and programme their comms equipment (yes the GP380 will be sent to them to programme), I doubt very much they would programme one of my transceivers also, I am not even sure of the legalities of this either.

Obviously I want to do things by the book, that is why I had posted on another forum what some might consider as 'some rather strange questions' - I was asking as clearly my lack of knowledge in this area is pretty evident, secondly as this is (and the other similar forum I posted on) involves radio communications and many forum users who might be best placed to give me advice, I don't find that strange. Perhaps I could have explained my sitution a bit more clearly.

Obviously I do not want to be doing anything that is illegal. Posting on these forums so that I can gain some knowledge and information from other forum users who are more educated in this area. Always learning.

Thanks to all who have given me advice and apologies that I may not have made my situation more clearer hence the 'rather strange questions' that have been posted by myself here and on other forums.


It has been a long day, hopefully I have put things into context.


Thanks :thumbup:

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 23 Mar 2016, 22:03

thelad wrote:I suspect Medic1 on here is the same user on the UK scanning forum going under the same username asking some rather strange questions about transmitting to St Johns Ambo and Red Cross but now he just wants to listen in? :crazy:

http://ukradioscanning.com/viewtopic.ph ... ic1#p22484
6th Post down the page.


Hi thelad,

thank you for your comment and observations. Please see above post, hopefully I have made my situation a little more clearer.

Thanks :thumbup:

bigboyblue
Regular
Regular
Posts: 22
Joined: 02 Jun 2015, 11:24

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by bigboyblue » 24 Mar 2016, 20:18

Be careful if you try to operate in Ireland. eircom there require each individual radio to be licensed, and each one gets a sticker for the inside. No sticker, loose your radio. And they are quite anal about it.

paulears
Radio Addict
Radio Addict
Posts: 679
Joined: 10 Jun 2007, 22:41
Call Sign: G4RMT
Location: North East Suffolk
Contact:

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by paulears » 24 Mar 2016, 20:36

That's a bit odd? The Eire system is extremely close to OFCOM's, and the Commission for Communications Regulations run it. Eircom are a private company, a bit like BT, and have no regulatory duties? Their system is actually like ours, based on European practice with virtually identical bands, including PMR446. Eric have no powers I'm aware of to confiscate equipment, and ComReg have their own interference teams, like us who investigate illegal use.

Northern Ireland, although part of the UK, still have some different band planning for security purposes, but sufficiently close for the North and South systems to co-exist as they're very close, geography wise.

What is the eircom connection with licensing? They're not interested, as far as I know, with amateur or business radio - just telecoms.

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 25 Mar 2016, 19:45

paulears wrote:That's a bit odd? The Eire system is extremely close to OFCOM's, and the Commission for Communications Regulations run it. Eircom are a private company, a bit like BT, and have no regulatory duties? Their system is actually like ours, based on European practice with virtually identical bands, including PMR446. Eric have no powers I'm aware of to confiscate equipment, and ComReg have their own interference teams, like us who investigate illegal use.

Northern Ireland, although part of the UK, still have some different band planning for security purposes, but sufficiently close for the North and South systems to co-exist as they're very close, geography wise.

What is the eircom connection with licensing? They're not interested, as far as I know, with amateur or business radio - just telecoms.

Hi Paulers,

Northern Ireland is indeed part of the Uk as you pointed out.The Republic of Ireland (Southern Ireland) has its own seperate laws and legislations, police force, Health Service and Courts systems etc all of which are very different from us here in Northern Ireland.

Even with the seperate police forces etc, they are very different and don't work with each other as such. Any business in Northern Ireland (or individual) applying for a licence for radio communications for business purposes has to complete the Ofcom Spectrum licensing application, pay the fee and and get the licence. So effectively we are governed by Ofcom and must work witihn their regulations and guidelines.

Unfortunately that is just the situation here in Ireland, both North and South and can be confusing for anyone who is not aware of the situation here if you get what I mean.

Once you cross the border you are effectively in a different country!

So to keep things right, must follow any regs & guidelines that Ofcom set to ensure things are done in the proper way.


Thanks :thumbup:

bigboyblue
Regular
Regular
Posts: 22
Joined: 02 Jun 2015, 11:24

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by bigboyblue » 25 Mar 2016, 20:20

I mean comreg. Not eircom. (who incidentally are like BT / post office telephones were in the 60's, takes 4 months to get a phone line, god help you if you want it quicker)

Ireland seems to be a lot more into regulation for cash. Their PSA (like the SIA in the UK) conduct regular inspections everywhere, and also regulate cctv and intruder alarm systems. They inspect with lots of threats of fines, and rely on the income generated by said fines.

comreg seem to be on the same lines. We have never ever had random handset inspections by Ofcom, and one of our clients is a high street retailer with both uk and Ireland operations. Yet in Ireland, every single handset in use has been inspected. Some areas more than once.

Medic1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 8
Joined: 14 Mar 2016, 21:44
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Anyone know the current Northern Ireland St John Ambulance & British Red Cross Frequencies

Post by Medic1 » 25 Mar 2016, 20:58

bigboyblue wrote:I mean comreg. Not eircom. (who incidentally are like BT / post office telephones were in the 60's, takes 4 months to get a phone line, god help you if you want it quicker)

Ireland seems to be a lot more into regulation for cash. Their PSA (like the SIA in the UK) conduct regular inspections everywhere, and also regulate cctv and intruder alarm systems. They inspect with lots of threats of fines, and rely on the income generated by said fines.

comreg seem to be on the same lines. We have never ever had random handset inspections by Ofcom, and one of our clients is a high street retailer with both uk and Ireland operations. Yet in Ireland, every single handset in use has been inspected. Some areas more than once.

Hi bigboyblue,

Yes indeed, I agree 100 percent with what tou say regards Southern Ireland. What is even more concerning is that if you attend an Accident & Emergency unit at any hospital it is fifty Euros (yes their currency is different also :eh: ) just to be triaged. If you do not have the cash on you, then you are required to provide your welfare issued medical card and identification, you are then invoiced for the initial fifty euro just to be seen then charged for any additional treatment/services....their whole system down their has been adapted from the American systems, I guess due to the close relationship that exists between Ireland and America.

Unfortunately it is like most things no matter where you go...politics, religion and money!


Thanks :thumbup:

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest