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P.I. Reportedly Gone from VHF

June 15, 2013

As you may recall, all PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) radio operations moved to a new narrowbanded VHF system earlier this year that was linked to the PA Starnet 800 MHZ system. Operations talkgroups for each forest district were to be simulcast on VHF repeaters so VHF portables could talk with 800 MHZ bases and mobiles. This plan included operations at Presque Isle State Park for their ranger, maintenance and lifeguard operations.

I never caught on to this, but a dedicated scanner listener in Erie noticed recently that chatter was gone from the designated PISP linked frequencies (151.16, 151.4, and 151.445.) In curiosity, he contacted the staff at the park and received a reply stating that they no longer use the VHF system and that they operate exclusively on 800 MHZ. This was news to me, as I didn’t know of this happening anywhere. Additionally, lifeguards carry portables while on duty, and portables are definitely not 800 MHZ. So what frequencies or system are they using for their operations?

At this time I don’t have the answers to those questions. However, I can confirm that the PISP VHF frequencies as listed are not currently being used. I don’t know how communications are occurring or what VHF frequencies (if any) the portables are being operated on. We will have more details in the future as we research this, but in the meantime if anyone has any details on the status of this operation they would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to “Scnrfriendq” as well for all his hard work and dedicated research in figuring out the mysteries of Erie area radio communications!

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