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Police Radio and Crowded Airwaves
Air to air police radio communication is critical for safe aircraft operations. And, because of standards in training, equipment and frequency allocation, air to air police radio communication is generally reliable. Air-to-ground police radio communication, on the other hand, is not quite as reliable and can lead to serious problems during normal aircraft operations.  There are over 17,000 state and local law enforcement agencies in the United States. For very practical reasons, each police department has its own radio frequency or frequencies. Moreover, each state and local agency is influenced by a political parent organization, such as a municipal police force, and is ultimately managed by a city. When making budgetary choices, organizations spend money for public safety-related technologies at vastly different rates.

Police Radio - Cop Cars: From Buckboard to Buck Rodgers
Cops are constantly adapting their equipment to the environment. Our kit bags have grown larger and larger as we collected equipment to deal with the job. Our police departments gives us the basics and as we face new situations we think about what we could have used as a tool to have made the task easier. Then, we go out and get that tool for next time. Much of the commercially produced police equipment, including some police radio equipment, used by our peers today was developed on the fly by those who walked the beat before us.  The concept of the police car as a mobile office was developed by those of us who worked long shifts and thought What could be added to this car to make my job easier? Make me more comfortable? Help me to hunt down dangerous offenders?

Police Radio - Tailored Technology
State and local governments can spend more than $50,000 outfitting one police car with modern police radio technologies, and adding the necessary information technologies can double the cost of outfitting the car, according to market observers and police departments. Car service life varies, but typically lasts 24/7 for three to five years -- or about 85,000 miles. With the technology refinements that transform police cars into mobile offices, equipment installation is similar to creating a small network in a home or office. Each police agency starts with basic computing requirements and adds peripheral devices, choosing different technology combinations, such as multiple police radios, in-car video, mobile data computers or even docking stations.

Police Radio - The Mobile Office: Field Tactics and Investigations
The introduction of mobile technology, like police radio, into law enforcement has increased dramatically. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, in 2000, 75% of local police officers and 61% of sheriffs' officers worked for an agency that used in-field computers or terminals, compared to 30% and 28% in 1990. Just at the rate of application has increased, so has the sophistication of the equipment. Indeed, in the previous article we saw that police in-field computers have steadily graduated from dumb terminals to fully-functioning computers. Sophisticated equipment, like police radio technology, has given the street officer access to more and better information and provided him or her with a variety of means to capture information. Unfortunately, we may be somewhat lagging in our ability to apply that information in our field investigations and tactics. In this article we will explore some of the possible uses of technology in field investigations.

Police Radio - The Patrol Vehicle Platform
The mobile office is on its way out. In the near future, the only way to describe a police car will be as a platform. A platform is a combination of technologies with real-world applications. Thinking of your police car as a platform gives us a foundation from which to explore your car's future. It won't just be your office, it will be another set of senses, operating independent of you, and providing you with real-time information on the world around you. More importantly, the Police Vehicle Platform (PVP) will significantly enhance your safety and ability to conduct law enforcement operations.

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