Arlington County, Va., Has Its Own Fire Radio

Arlington County, Va., Has Its Own Fire Radio

Arlington County, Va., located across the Potomac River from Washington, D. C., placed in operation its own complete two-way radio system on June 7, 1951. The set-up includes a headquarters radio station, mobile units and telephone switchboard.

The station is manned 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by fire department personnel. The two-way mobile units have been installed on the first line pieces of fire apparatus in the County’s eight fire stations, plus the two chiefs’ cars, making a total of thirteen two-way mobile units.

Under the present operation, both the fire and police department radio and telephone switchboards are manned independently of each other but have constant contact by both radio and direct line telephone.

The sets on the fire apparatus are 30 watts, the chiefs’ cars are 60 watts, and the station itself is 150 watts, which is reported more than adequate for covering the Arlington County territory of approximately 24 square miles. It is anticipated that radio will be installed on the balance of the fire department equipment in the not too distant future.

According to Arlington’s Fire Chief, A. C. Scheffel, during the short period of time the new system has beeh in operation it already has saved unnecessary mileage in the response of fire apparatus. Chief Scheffel contends that the improvement will offer greater efficiency in all-around communications for fire emergency within Arlington County and surrounding territory in both mutual aid and civil defense.

New two-way fire radio system ties in Arlington County's eight stations and fire line fire apparatus. Shown above, Fire Chief A. C. Scheffel (standing) and J. H. Clements, drill instructor, making a test call using the new system at Company No. 4, North Hudson Street, Arlington, Va.

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