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What are the two divisions of FD communications?

internal and external


What is external communication?

requests from the public for both emergency and nonemergency assistance


What is internal communication?

consists primarily of radio transmissions between units and individuals during emergency operations


What is the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP)?

any location or facility at which 911 calls are answered either by direct calling, rerouting, or diversion


What are the two broad categories of telecommunications systems?

Emergency Service Specific Telecommunications Center and PSAP


What is the Emergency Service Specific Telecommunications Center?

this center separates telecommunications or dispatch centers that the FD, emergency medical services, or law enforcement agencies operate


What is NFPA 1221

NFPA 1221: Standard for the Installation, Maintenance, and Use of Emergency Services Communications Systems


What information should be gathered when the public contacts the FD directly?

the type of emergency, the location of the emergency, the number and location of people involved, the name of location of caller, the callback number, and the street/building name/neighborhood/area of city/nearby landmarks


What is an Automatic Location Identification (ALI)?

an enhanced 911 feature that displays address of party calling. This feature also routes calls to the appropriate PSAP


What are different examples of Public Alerting Systems?

Radio, wired telegraph circuit box, telephone fire alarm box, and radio fire alarm box


When referring to public alerting systems, where is an emergency most likely to be reported from FD personnel or other government workers?



What public alert systems are equipped with a telephone for direct voice contact with the telecommunications center?

Telephone fire alarm box


What public alert system contains an independent radio transmitter with a battery power supply?

Radio fire alarm box


Who is the contact person for nonemergency or complaint calls?

Public Information Officer (PIO)


What does dispatch begin with?

some form of alert to the stations, apparatus, or individuals


What are the 3 forms of alarm notification?

Visual (station lights)
Audible (vocal alarm, station bell, sirens, etc)
Electronic (radio with tone alert, computer terminal screen with alarm or line printer, scrolling message board, etc)


How do volunteer FD's alert members of an emergency? (usually)



What type of communications are most internal communications?

Radio communication


What are base station radios?

fixed, nonmotile radio at a central location


What must portable radios be that are used in hazardous atmospheres?

Intrinsically safe


What is intrinsically safe equipment?

equipment designed and approved for use in flammable atmospheres that is incapable of releasing sufficient electrical energy to cause the ignition of a flammable atmospheric mixture


What are the two types of carrier waves?

AM (amplitude modulation) and FM (frequency modulation)


What are AM waves sometimes referred to?

medium wave signals


What do AM waves do?

they vary the strength of the signal to reflect the speaker's voice


What do FM waves do?

they allow for the signal to change based of the microphone audio; the signal is filtered to remove any frequencies over the human voice without making changes to the signal


Which wave signal does a better job of cancelling naturally occurring noice? AM or FM



What refers to the straight line travel of radio signals between the antenna connected to the transmitter and the antenna connected to the receiver?

Direct communications


What is a simplex system?

a simplex system is when one radio transmits and another receives; a two-party system operating on one frequency because only one radio can transmit at a time


How is the problem of barriers solved in direct communication?



What are repeaters?

used to increase the range of the radio system and to send signal over tall barriers; usually location on high points


What is a half-duplex system?

The repeater system uses two radio frequencies for communication; the transmitting radio transmits on Frequency 1 and that signal is received by the repeater; the repeater than repeats the transmission on Frequency 2 and the signal is received by the receiving radio


What is a full-duplex system?

This allows radio communication in both directions simultaneously such as communications on a landline; allows for more rapid transmission of information


What are the two types of radio systems?

trunked or conventional


What is a conventional radio system?

a radio frequency is dedicated to a single function such as operations; b/c the frequency is dedicated to only one use, no other function or unit can transmit on it even when no one is transmitting on it


What is a trunked radio system?

assigns transmissions to available frequencies; improves efficiency; depends on repeaters to route calls through the system; high volumes of traffic can be handled on multiple channels when large-scale or numerous operations are underway


What are three main features of a trunked radio system?

Multigroup call, private call, and dynamic regrouping


What is multi group call?

used to transmit calls to two or more talk groups; once the connection is established the talk groups can communicate with each other


What is a private call?

basically a telephone call; permits one radio to call another; private


What is dynamic regrouping?

emergency alert feature that, if activated, sends a signal to the agency's dispatch center


Who regulates all radio communication in the US?

the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)


What are fireground channels?

channels assigned to FD's for dispatching only; the command channel is assigned to the IC while a second tactical channel is assigned for fireground operations


What have FD's replaced for ten-codes?

Clear text


What is clear text?

use of plain language, including certain standard words and phrases, in radio communications/transmissions


What are the 4 main limitations or barriers to all radio transmission?

Distance, physical barriers, interference, and ambient noise


What can be examples of the cause of interface barriers in radio transmission?

another powerful radio signal, vehicle ignitions, electric motors, computers, equipment with microphones, etc.


What are the ABC's of good communication?

be Accurate Brief and Concise


How far should you hold the radio/mic from your mouth of SCBA apparatus when transmitting?

1-2 inches


What do you need to do if you are the first person to arrive on scene?

provide an initial radio report


In regards to on scene communication, what will be based on the information contained i the initial and subsequent radio broadcasts?

Strategic and tactical decisions, the placement of apparatus, the assignment of personnel, and the need for additional resources


The telecommunications center may also be assigned the task of providing periodic time transmissions at designated intervals, such as ___ minutes



Periodic time transmissions at designated intervals provide two important uses. What are they?

1. to assist in air management to remind interior units to read their air capacity gauges
2. to assist the IC and command staff to gauge the effectiveness of the strategies and tactics that are being used to control the situation


What are the two examples of tactical progress reports?

CARA and CAN reports
CARA: Conditions, Actions, Resources, Air
CAN: Conditions, Actions, Needs


What is a CARA Report?

tactical progress report
C: conditions
A: actions
R: resources
A: air


What is a CAN report?

tactical progress report
C: conditions
A: actions
N: needs


Why would be a need for additional resources be necessary at an emergency incident?

a chance in conditions


What is an alarm assignment?

predetermined number and type of fire units assigned to respond to an emergency


(Depending on local protocol) What are the orders to cease interior operations?

withdraw, abandon, or evacuate


What is another name for distress calls from FF?

MAYDAY signal


How do hearing impaired individuals contact the FD?

TDD teletype (telecommunications device for the deaf)


What is a personnel accountability report? (PAR)

a systematic method of conforming the status of units operating at an incident. When PAR is requested every supervisor must verify the status of those under his/her command and report it


What are the responsibility that an IC can request PAR?

a regular 15 minute interval, the incident is declared under control, there is a change from offensive to defensive strategy, sudden catastrophic event, there is an emergency evacuation, FF reported missing, etc.


What is a post incident report used for?

Details of events


What is the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS)?

one of the main sources of information about fires in the US; under NFIRS, local FD's collect fire incident data and send to the state coordinator


Who was the NFIRS developed by?

USFA - united states fire administration