Etter, Ted . 2003. Fire Shelters Weaken Transmissions From Hand-Held Radios. 0351 2342P. Missoula, MT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Missoula Technology and Development Center. 4 p.
Wildland firefighters who try to use their hand-held radios inside fire shelters will be unlikely to communicate with their supervisors and may not even be able to communicate with other firefighters inside fire shelters just 50 feet away. Transmissions from the older VHF (very high frequency, 30 to 300 MHz) Bendix-King radios were not weakened as badly as those from the newer UHF (ultra high frequency, 300 to 3,000 MHz) Motorola Astro XTS 3000 radios. The standard fire shelter being carried by wildland firefighters did not weaken the transmissions as much as the New Generation Fire Shelter that is just beginning to be carried by wildland firefighters. The tech tip includes a table showing exactly how much the transmissions were weakened in different situations. Essentially, firefighters could shout and be heard as far as if they used their new UHF radios inside a fire shelter.
Keywords: Bendix-King, communications, equipment, evaluations, Motorola
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