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.
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!