Thursday, January 28, 2010


In preparation for the exchange process that is about to occur, it is important that agencies understand the expectations for the equipment they will be turning in. All returned equipment will become property of Sprint/Nextel. Sprint/Nextel will not accept broken or damaged equipment. All P800 series portables must be able to power up and connect to the network to be considered acceptable for return. Any broken accessories (belt clips, antennas, battery clasps, etc) will render the portable unacceptable for return as well. If an item cannot be returned, then you will not receive new equipment in exchange. If any of your equipment does not meet the standards described above you are STRONGLY encouraged to contact the Harris Corporation for service, so that problems can be corrected before the exchange. Harris will be able to advise you regarding who the financial obligation for repairs falls upon. Some repairs may be covered by warranty; others may be billed to your agency. If damage is the result of negligence by the agency repairs will not be covered under warranty.

If you have any questions regarding this policy please do not hesitate to call or email Megan.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Mapping the Progress

As part of Cumberland County's renewed commitment to improving lines of communication with 800 MHz system users, we will be posting weekly progress maps, so that you can track the rebanding and portable exchange process. Two maps will be posted weekly showing progress of law enforcement agencies and one showing progress of Fire/EMS/Other.

Law Enforcement Map Key
-Completed (Portable exchange is complete and all installs and software upgrades have been completed.)
-In Process (Harris and DPS are actively engaged in the exchange process.)
-Scheduled (The training has been scheduled and tentative exchanged dates are set.)
-Pending (Portable training and exchange process has yet to begin. No department or agency is engaged in the exchange process.)
-The exchange process does no effect municipalities without color, as they do not have municipal police departments.

Fire/EMS/Other Map Key
-Completed (Portable exchange is complete and all installs and software upgrades have been completed. A municipality will be considered completed when all services (not including law enforcement) that primarily serve municipality have been completed.)
-In Process (Harris and DPS are actively engaged in the exchange process. A municipality can be changed to “In Process” if any service within that municipality is engaged in the exchange process.)
-Scheduled (Portable training dates have been scheduled and tentative dates for exchange are set.)
-Pending (Portable training exchange process has yet to begin. No department or agency is engaged in the exchange process.)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Shippensburg Training Dates Announced

February 1, 2010
1400 hrs
Shippensburg Police Department

The dates below are open to all Shippensburg emergency services personnel.

February 4, 2010
1900 hrs
West End Fire and Rescue

February 6, 2010
1000 hrs
Vigilant Hose Company

February 8, 2010
1900 hrs
Shippensburg Firefighters Activities Center

February 10, 2010
1900 hrs
Shippensburg Firefighters Activities Center

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What to Expect...

As we are moving forward with the exchange process we want to keep you updated as to what you can expect as the process unfolds. So here is the information break down…

Agency Contact
- Your agency will be contacted as your time to engage in the exchange draws near.
- Your agency will be contacted with 2-3 weeks advanced notice to schedule training through HACC.

- Training provided by HACC
- Lasts approximately 2-2.5 hours
- Training radios provided for the class
- Conducted locally
- Super User’s Seminar to be held towards the end of exchange
- Harris battery management training to be offered in the middle of this projectAgency Visits-

Agency Visits-The Numbers
- 69 Agencies (40 Fire, 17 Law Enforcement, 12 EMS)
- 1,506 Portables
- 819 Portable Charger Install/Replacements
- 675 Mobiles and 26 Control Stations Reprogramming

Agency Visits- Who to Expect
- Harris: Reprogramming of mobiles/control stations and removal and installation of portable chargers
- Kimball: Managing warehouse, preparation and portable exchange
- Cumberland County DPS: Assisting in the exchange and activation of new portables

Agency Visits- What to Expect
- Agency visits and the actual exchange should occur about two weeks after you recieve your training.
- Teams comprised of Harris, Kimball and DPS representatives will be on hand to work through this project.
- You should have 1-2 agency representatives on hand the day of the exchange.
- All equipment that is to be exchanged and reprogrammed should be present on your scheduled day. Any equipment that cannot be located by the end of the county wide exchange will be removed from the system and will not be replaced.
- A DPS representative will be visiting or calling your agency the day of your exchange to make sure everything is running smoothly. A representative will also call in the weeks following the exchange to make sure everything is functioning properly.

Site and Radio Re-tuning
- Site re-tuning will occur at the completion of the exchange process. Technicians will visit tower sites and remove the old frequencies from the site and enter the new frequencies issued to Cumberland County through the band reconfiguration. Radio users will not be impacted by this process.
- A “2nd Touch” will occur at a later date as well. The “2nd Touch” involves removing the old frequencies from the P7200 series portables. This step will not occur this year and will most likely been seen in 2011.

800 Radio Quality Assurance Program
- DPS is committed to renewing communications between our office and radio users. We want to work with you to address any issues that may occur during the exchange process and any problems that occur with the system after the radios are released.
- Megan Silverstrim is now serving as the point of contact for the 800 MHz radio program. Please contact Megan with any questions or problems.
Megan Silverstrim

Friday, January 15, 2010

Portable Charger Installation

When Harris installs chargers into apparatus for the P7200 series, there will be a notable difference from the last time chargers were installed into your apparatus. When the P800 chargers were installed some were connected to the vehicle starter and some agencies preferred they be connected to the vehicle battery. All P7200 series portables will be connected to the vehicle battery upon installation. What’s the reason for this you may ask? Well it has to do with portable battery preservation. The lifespan of a battery only allows for a set amount of charges. We found that when connected to the side of the ignition that would cut all unnecessary circuits when the apparatus is started, the power interruption would start the charging cycle whether it was needed or not, with the end result being a shortened battery life. To prevent this problem it has been determined that all charges will be connected to the battery that is not part of the apparatus starting circuit if possible. The fewer times a charge cycle is restarted the longer the battery will last. While most apparatus in the County is shore lined, we realize that some are not. We understand the risk of dead vehicle batteries that may be associated with this install and non-shore lined vehicles, it is imperative that the install be connected to the vehicle battery. The solution to this problem, do not keep portables in the chargers in non-shore lined apparatus. Only place portable in the charger periodically to charge.

If your agency is adamantly opposed to having chargers that connect to vehicle batteries, a waiver will need to be signed stating that you understand the warranty on your batteries is no longer valid, as you have chosen not to follow the recommendations of Harris and DPS.

If you have questions regarding this installation policy please feel free to comment on this post and give us your feedback.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Contact Information

Megan Silverstrim has been appointed as the new spokesperson and contact person for the 800 MHz Radio Project. If you have any questions, comments or problems during and after the exchange process please contact Megan. Her contact information can be found below.

Megan Silverstrim

The List...

Below you will find the order in which the portable exchange process will take place. Keep in mind the list is subject to some minor changes. Dates are not listed at this time. This list follows our original plan to start with all agencies in areas with major Nextel interference, then do a West to East sweep of Police, and complete the project with a West to East sweep of Fire/EMS/Municipal/Other. We are currently scheduling training for the Shippensburg Area, which should occur around February 1, 2010. The exchange process should begin about two weeks, give or take a few days after your training session. We will be running a 3 week rolling schedule to maintain consistency of minimum 2 week period between training and site visit.

If you have questions regarding this list or the upcoming events please contact Megan Silverstrim with DPS.

Megan Silverstrim

Master List
Franklin Fire Co. 4 (Franklin County)
Friendship Engine and Hose No.1-Co.14 (Franklin County)
Shippensburg Borough
Shippensburg PD
Shippensburg Borough Fire
Vigilant Hose Company 52
Cumberland Valley Hose 53
West End Fire and Rescue Co54
Shippensburg EMS 73
Shippensburg Township
New Cumberland Borough Police
New Cumberland Borough Fire Co10
New Cumberland River Rescue Co.100
New Cumberland EMS Co10
New Cumberland Borough Fire Police
Middlesex Township Municipal
Middlesex Township Police
Middlesex Township Fire
West Shore Regional Police
West Shore Bureau of Fire
West Shore EMS Co. 80
East Pennsboro Township Police
East Pennsboro Township Fire
West Fairview Fire Co. 16
Midway Fire Co.17
Citizens Fire Co18
West Enola Fire Co19
Summerdale Fire Co20
Creekside Fire Co21
East Pennsboro Township Fire Police
East Pennsboro Township EMS Co75
Marysville Fire Co6
Marysville Borough Co6
Camp Hill Borough Police
Camp Hill Borough Fire Co14
Camp Hill Borough EMS Co14
Upper Allen Township Municipal
Upper Allen Township Police
Upper Allen Township Fire Co23
Upper Allen Township Fire Police
Newville Borough Police
Carlisle Borough Police
Mt. Holly Springs Borough Police
North Middleton Township Police
Silver Spring Township Police
Mechanicsburg Borough Police
Shiremanstown Borough Police
Hampden Township Police
Lower Allen Township Police
Cumberland County Sheriffs Department
Newburg Fire Co51
Newburg Borough Municipal
Penn Township Fire Co50
South Newton Fire Co49
Upper Frankford Township Fire Co48
Newville Borough Municipal
Friendship Hose Co47
Newville EMS Co47
West Pennsboro Township Municipal
West Pennsboro Township Fire Co46
Carlisle Borough Fire
Carlisle Fire and Rescue Co45
Union Fire Company Co41
Carlisle Borough Fire Police
Carlisle EMS Co40
North Middleton Township Municipal
North Middleton Fire Co39
Naval Support Activity Fire Co37
Carlisle Barracks Fire Co38
Dickinson Township Fire
Citizens Fire Co36
Yellow Breeches EMS Co91
South Middleton Township Municipal
South Middleton Township Fire
South Middleton Township Fire Co35
Shermansdale Fire Co34
Silver Spring Township Municipal
Silver Spring Township Fire Co31
New Kingstown Fire Co33
Silver Spring EMS Co72
Metro Med Co72
Hampden Township Municipal
Hampden Township Fire Co30
Hampden EMS Co71
Mechanicsburg Borough Municipal
Mechanicsburg Borough Fire
Citizens Fire Co27
Washington Fire Co28
Monroe Township Fire Co25
Lower Allen Township Municipal
Lower Allen Township Fire Co12
Lisburn Fire Co24
Lower Allen Township EMS Co74
Shiremanstown Borough Fire Co22
Carlisle Area School District
Cumberland County Transit
Cumberland County Building and Grounds
Cumberland County Coroner
Cumberland Count District Attorney
Cumberland County Domestic Relations
Cumberland County Prison
Cumberland County Adult Probation
Cumberland County Juvenile Probation
Cumberland County SHOT
Cumberland County Executive Offices
Sentinel News
WHP CBS 21 News
Patriot News
WHTM ABC 27 News
Messiah College Security
York Co. 911
Shippensburg University Police
Bendersville Fire Co7
Biglerville Fire Co6
Bendersville EMS Co7
York Springs Co9
Monaghan Fire Dept.
Fairview Fire Dept.
Carlisle Barracks Police
DCNR-Pine Grove
DCNR- Col. Denning
DCNR- Kings Gap
DCNR- Michaux Fire SupervisorDCNR- Michaux Forest Ranger

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Project Kick-Off Meeting February 1, 2010

DPS will be engaging in a 800 MHz Portable Exchange Project Kick-Off Meeting on February 1, 2010. This meeting, which will signal the official start to the long awaited portable exchange process, will involve players from DPS, Kimball and The Harris Corporation. The purpose of the meeting is to finalize the resources needed for the exchange as well as schedules for agency visits, so that the exchange process can begin as soon as possible.

Agencies are once again reminded to start inventorying their portables and equipment for the exchange. Missing equipment will not be replaced in the exchange.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

DPS and HACC Conduct Intstructor Training

On January 13, 2010 DPS along with HACC will begin the first in a series of steps that will lead up to the portable exchange process and rebanding. The 11 contracted HACC instructors will be attending refresher training on this date in the Cumberland County EOC and will receive the instructing materials they need to start training users in the field. These 11 instructors will deliver training to local agencies over the coming weeks and months as we begin the portable exchange process.

Users are encouraged to keep checking this site in the coming days and weeks. This site will become increasingly useful for users and a great source of information as we embark on the exchange process!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Radio Exchange

Agencies can expect to receive notifications and a schedule within the coming weeks regarding their involvement in the portable exchange process. The exchange process will initially target areas with known interference issues. Following that wave, a general west to east sweep will occur for all public safety agencies. This will be followed by the exchange of municipal and non-public safety portables.

DPS will attempt to give your agency as much advance notice as possible regarding this process. Agencies can expect training to occur within a 1-2 week range before the portable replacement and reprogramming phase will take place.

Training is being conducted by Harrisburg Area Community College and takes approximately two hours. Courses will be conducted locally for the agency. Following the replacement and reprogramming phase- another “Super User’s” seminar will be provided for those individuals identified as local agency trainers and an updated training CD will be provided to the trainer.

Agency Visits
Unlike the original mobile radio installs and portable radio deliveries that were done prior to transition to the 800 MHz radio system; this will be done in the live environment. The Harris and county contracted teams that visit the agency will be doing various tasks – but will attempt not to completely place an agency out of service. Harris teams will reprogram mobile radios and control stations; and remove and replace portable chargers that may be installed in your fleet vehicles. County contracted teams will exchange and activate replacement portable radios; and exchange accessories related to the replacement portables. Prior to arriving at the agency – the replacement portable radios will have charged batteries ready for operational use. All batteries distributed will be previously conditioned according to manufacturer recommendations and verified the battery meets or exceed original manufactures specifications. Exchanged portable radios will be deactivated from the system during the visit. The agency should make any effort possible to have the inventory ready on day of visit. While we recognize all good faith efforts to have the inventory available – alternate arrangements for missing inventory needs to be discussed prior to the visit. At the end of all agency visits – all unaccounted portable radios will be deactivated – and the agency will be responsible to replace the radio and/or accessory at their own expense. No P800 series portables can be used following the realignment project.

Portable Radio/Accessory Replacement Requirements
Under the terms agreed upon by Sprint/Nextel and the FCC – a portable radio or portable radio accessory will only be replaced if an old radio or old accessory is available to be exchanged. If you do not have the old portable or old portable accessory – you will not be provided a new portable radio or portable radio accessory. The old portable radio and old portable radio accessory must be in working order – if it is not then it will not be replaced. Our replacement inventory was based on original M/A-Com sales records and follow up agency surveys. If third party items were purchased and not reported to our office – those items will not be replaced during the agency visit. If you have purchased third party items (documentation of purchase would be helpful) – the County will attempt to have Sprint/Nextel provide replacements following the completion of the agency visits. A note about portable radio battery – radio batteries have a service life – approximately two years. Old batteries “saved” in anticipation of replacement by Sprint/Nextel will not be considered for exchange. Sales documentation from original M/A-Com radio purchases were used to determine the inventory for actual batteries to be replaced. No more than two batteries will be provided for exchange and this will be on a one for one exchange validated by the original sales records.

Please be sure to check back here on a regular basis in the coming weeks, as we will have lots of information to release!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

REMINDER: Are you ready for portable exchange?

As our office continues to work towards preparing for the P7200 series exchange, we would like to remind all services that they may need to do some preparing for the exchange as well. We are encouraging all companies and departments to begin inventorying their portables, batteries, chargers and any other accessories that will be exchanged. While we do not expect you to collect items at this time, it is important that you know the location of all items. We understand it is easy to lose track of a battery or charger along the way, but any missing items MUST be located for the exchange process to occur.