Skip to comments.Oakland police radio culprit: cell towers
Posted on 08/21/2012 11:56:16 PM PDT by thecodont
Oakland officials say they and federal investigators have discovered a major source of disruption to the city's police radio communications system: interference from cell phone towers.
Specifically, officials said, cell phone towers operated by AT&T Wireless have been interfering with the city's public safety communications frequency and causing radio failures among police and firefighters on city streets.
AT&T, notified by the city of the problem last week, is cooperating and has partially disabled 16 towers. A company spokesman said the impact on customers will be minimal, affecting only those on the company's oldest phones.
The towers constantly interfered with the radios, but the problems became particularly pronounced when a police car was within a quarter to a half mile of a tower, said David Cruise, Oakland's public safety systems adviser.
"If the officer is in an area close to one of their cell sites, essentially the cell site overpowers their radios," he said.
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/crime/article/Oakland-police-radio-culprit-cell-towers-3802585.php#ixzz24Fu6TL7G
(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...
I’ll be danged. I live in Oakland. I’m still on dial-up (I’ve heard the jokes, darn it) and for the last couple of weeks my internet connection has been LOUSY. Having to reconnect every few minutes sometimes.
I hope this means they’re gonna fix it ‘cause I really, really don’t want to have to join the 21st century.
At&t sucks in my area. They need all the towers the can get.
” Im still on dial-up”
If you need an extra AOL disc, I have some in the garage.
They make the best driveway reflectors
I give ‘em crap about being able to use their coverage map to indicate where we’ll be drilling next. No coverage, we’ll be there. I’m moving ‘lines’ over to Verizon as they go post-contract. They’re too close to just bail and have it be affordable.
Actually, a brilliant idea!
It isn’t at all clear whether the defect is in the AT&T transmitters or the police receivers.
It’s like that company, lightsquared, that wants to use frequency that will interfer with cheap GPS receivers. There’s so much installed capacity, basically passive spectrum squatting, that they cannot get regulatory approval.
Placing the blame on police receivers or in the case of Lightsquared “cheap GPS” is overlooking the practical limitations of out of band rejection of strong signals over weak in band signals.
In the case of cheap GPS receivers, good, compliant military receivers suffer no degradation from the proposed lightsquared system. I suspect that the AT&T transmitters are fully compliant, but the older police radios were cheaper to produce by not worrying about interference which at the time was relatively rare.
Verizon is great but expensive. Never dropped a call.
“Good” military GPS have capabilities not available to the general public. Even so I don’t believe the DOD supported the Lightsquared proposal.
The whole mess was political from the beginning. The band that Lightsquared wanted to use was assigned for satellite use only. It was an attempted end run with the help of the current administration to gain a competitive advantage in the market.
They are both expensive, imho, but never so much so as when they don’t work.
Or even in nearby passive nonlinear devices, such as other transmitters, antennas, gutter pipes, etc.
Not to discount, however, the possbility that the problem is (as you say) in the transmitter or the affected receivers, even if all are technically speaking in spec.