In emergency situations, clear communication is essential to survival. Knowing what is happening and what public safety officers are doing to address the problem can help families remain calm and make smart decisions about travel plans, stocking up on supplies, or even evacuation.
Scanner radios give their owners an important link to public safety information
, providing a critical advantage when disaster strikes.
With scanner radios, users can monitor police, fire, and other public safety communications traffic. Whether it’s a robbery of a nearby bank, information about an incoming tornado, or reports of motor vehicle accidents on the highway, scanner users will be in the know, allowing them to act accordingly.
What are Scanner Radios?
A police scanner is a radio that allows its users to scan multiple radio frequencies for radio traffic. Scanners will allow users to hear radio communications by police, fire, taxi services, commercial aircraft, EMTs, and other organizations. Police and other organizations using radio communications typically use multiple frequencies to communicate with their members. A scanner radio is sort of like an automatic remote control that flips through all these frequencies for you, allowing you to stop when you find something of interest.
Most scanners have a range of about 20 miles. Scanners will not always pick up all radio traffic. Some police departments have encrypted all traffic or will encrypt traffic during certain situations to keep unscrupulous individuals from using the information to thwart law enforcement efforts. The vast majority of police communication nationwide, however, is available to scanner owners.
There are a wide range of scanner radios consumers can choose from, including inexpensive scanners that provide the basics, as well as more expensive models that allow alpha-tagging and compatibility with your home computer. When purchasing a scanner, make sure to also check with the manufacturer or company you are purchasing from to ensure you are purchasing the correct scanner for your area. Having them program your scanner for you is also the best option to ensure it works right out of the box, and that can save you a lot of time. It is better to let the experts handle that part.
Scanners Provide Critical Communication in Crises
In crisis situations, owning a scanner can be invaluable, as it will allow users to monitor public safety communications. Scanner radios can be useful in situations such as:
- Wildfires – In recent years, the number of wildfires affecting the American west have increased significantly. Owning a scanner radio can help residents of areas at risk for wildfires keep tabs on efforts to contain the blazes. By monitoring scanner traffic, users can monitor how close wildfires are to their homes and get early evacuation warnings.
- Civil disturbances – Riots and similar instances of civil unrest are rare in America, but when they happen they can become dangerous very quickly. Access to public safety communications will help you stay informed of what’s going on in your city. Monitoring police traffic will help you learn what areas of your city to avoid and the progress of public safety officers to quell the unrest.
- Weather emergencies – During weather emergencies, scanner radios can be lifesavers. With a police scanner, residents can listen to emergency management agency and public safety traffic to learn valuable information. Scanner listeners can get the latest weather forecasts, warnings of imminent tornados, flooding alerts, and updates concerning road closures.
- General police traffic – By using police scanners to monitor police traffic, users can gain a better idea of how safe their neighborhoods are and how effective their police department is at responding to calls. By monitoring police scanners, users can know when events like robberies, active shooter incidents, and other similar situations are ongoing, allowing them to alter plans or activities as needed to avoid danger. Keeping tabs on police traffic will also inform users of car accidents and closed roads, allowing them to change travel plans.
- Neighborhood watch – For members of a neighborhood watch, a scanner is an invaluable tool as it will provide users with access to important information about suspects and ongoing police activity.
Severe Weather Increasingly Common
In recent years, severe weather events have become common. While the debate concerning climate change and its impact on weather is ongoing, the facts are that flooding, storms, and other severe weather events are becoming more common. Studies of long-term weather trends show a rise in heat waves and heavy rains, according to research by Texas Tech University. In the last half-century, average temperature in the U.S. has increased by two degrees and rain has increased by about five percent. Hurricane and tornado intensity have also increased.
Investing in a police scanner
can help you and your family remain safe when severe weather or other emergency conditions arise. By monitoring public safety communications, you’ll know what’s happening, where to go, where to avoid, and when help is on the way. Disasters have proven over and over again that communication is key to safety. By purchasing a police scanner, families can obtain important the information they need to stay safe when danger threatens their security.