PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 17

1920s: INAUGURATION OF ONE-WAY
RADIO COMMUNICATION
WITH PATROL CARS

What do you mean, no CAD? I
have to write the call on a card? No
9-1-1? I can't play back my call?
One-way radio transmissions?
With the development of CAD,
GIS, automatic playbacks, 9-1-1
and now FirstNet, NG9-1-1 and
other continuously developing
advancements in public safety
communications, where we are
today is a far cry from where our
industry began. Although providing service to others on what could
possibly be their worst day has not
changed, the methods and technologies for doing so have evolved
tremendously.

One of the first milestones in communications came in 1928 when the Detroit
Police Department inaugurated one-way
radio communication with its patrol cars.
The innovators were members of the department's radio bureau, and it took seven years
of experimenting and hard work to get to this
point. Soon other departments followed, as
the communication to the mobile units had
the potential for quicker responses.
And in the era of gangsters, quick communication was essential. The lack of direct
radio communications with the mobile units
permitted extra time for gangsters to get
away. This prompted a Detroit police officer
and an engineering buff to collaborate to
enable the beginning of one-way communication. They built a receiver and antenna
system, but this was not like the radio systems
of today - there was no encryption and no
private police broadcasting frequencies. The
police calls interrupted the AM radio station
playing music or entertainment. (How would
you feel driving down the road, listening to
the latest and greatest music hits, when suddenly your pleasure was interrupted by a
police call?)
1930s: INCEPTION OF
THE POLICE BOOTH

By August 1934, Detroit PD had accomplished two-way radio communication. Other
agencies began to adopt the technology, and
Goshen police officer
manning the booth,
year unknown. View
through window
appears to be looking
east on E. Lincoln
Avenue, Detroit.
Photo from Troyer
Studio Collection,
Goshen, Indiana.

1940s: OPENING OF A CENTRAL
COMPLAINT ROOM

In the 1940s, while others served in
WWII, some officers were on special alert
in the U.S.'s rural and urban areas; the rural
areas were just as vulnerable as urban areas
due to the war. Two-way radios had become
more prevalent, and they assisted in keeping
citizens safe across the country.
Between 1947 and 1952, the "Dispatcher"
was an economy series for one-piece twoway radios. This equipment was low on
transmitter power, so its use was limited to
small geographical areas, and it had a short
life span. However, the Dispatcher was used
to develop future models, leading to more
sophistication.
In 1948, the Buffalo Police Department
began operation of a central complaint room.
At that time, all complaints would be centralized through the complaint desk. This
allowed for more attention to detail and
improved service to citizens.
1950s: PROPOSAL OF A
SINGLE-DIGIT NUMBER

Prior to rotary dial telephones, an operator assisted all callers. In the event of an emergency, a caller would first need to go through
the switchboard operator, thus delaying the
call to a dispatcher.
One catalyst for change occurred in 1957
when the National Association of Fire Chiefs
proposed the use of a single-digit number
to report fires. Immediate action was not

PSC | May/June 2017

From the Chicago Daily News, 1929:
CPD Officer R.B. Greenwood and Detroit
Lt. K.R. Cox in police radio lab.

some began to plan for mobile communication for their motorcycle fleets.
In 1939, notorious gangsters John
Dillinger and Pretty Boy Floyd were thought
to be passing through Goshen, Indiana, on
the Lincoln Highway to other areas of the
state, stealing guns and ammunitions from
police departments and committing bank
robberies. In response to these fears, the
Goshen Police Department built a police
booth in the heart of the town near two
banks. A police officer manned the booth
around the clock, and citizens could walk to
the booth and file a complaint.
At the inception of the police booth, a
light system provided a signal to the officers
in the field, alerting them to call the booth.
Eventually a radio was installed in the police
booth, which permitted the booth officer
to contact mobile officers. The booth was
manned until about 1970.

17



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PSC - May/June 2017 Issue

President’s Channel
On Scene
Public Safety Communications Systems: The Future Is Smart
Evolution of the PSAP
E-Comm: A Model for Consolidated Emergency Communications and Public Safety Support
The Dos and Don’ts of Designing Your Communications Center on a Budget
When Germs Attack – Help Your PSAP Fight Back
How a Scheduling System Can Save Your Sanity
Advances in Quality Assurance and Improvement Software
9-1-1, Show Us Your Emergency
High Performance CPR & CDE Exam
Managing Peers in the PSAP & CDE Exam
Direct Channel With APCO
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Intro
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - cover1
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - cover2
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 3
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 4
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 5
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 6
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 7
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 8
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 9
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - President’s Channel
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - On Scene
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 12
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 13
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Public Safety Communications Systems: The Future Is Smart
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 15
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Evolution of the PSAP
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 17
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 18
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 19
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - E-Comm: A Model for Consolidated Emergency Communications and Public Safety Support
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 21
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - The Dos and Don’ts of Designing Your Communications Center on a Budget
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 23
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - When Germs Attack – Help Your PSAP Fight Back
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 25
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 26
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 27
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 28
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 29
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - How a Scheduling System Can Save Your Sanity
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 31
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Advances in Quality Assurance and Improvement Software
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 33
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 34
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 35
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 9-1-1, Show Us Your Emergency
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 37
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 38
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 39
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - High Performance CPR & CDE Exam
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 41
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 42
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 43
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Managing Peers in the PSAP & CDE Exam
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 45
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 46
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 47
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 48
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - 49
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - Direct Channel With APCO
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - cover3
PSC - May/June 2017 Issue - cover4
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