Monitoring FRS channel 1
I want to know if any firefighters Have heard of nationalSOS. It uses FRS radios(the small,compact radios for use at sporting events,malls,ETC.). Do you think? Could it work? Comments please.
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Anything involving the use of an FRS radio is a joke, plain and simple. Nobody will ever monitor them and their use in an emergency of any kind is laughable.
FRS radios are very limited range, too much interference, and not a good idea for anything even remotely related to public safety.
Shades of the old CB radio days, back when dispatch centers across the
country had CB radios set up to monitor channel 9 - they invariably ended
up turned down or off due to the noise.
Maybe this is splitting hairs, but I think FRS radios can be used to good advantage in an emergency. We used them at a Red Cross shelter during Katrina response. They're great for that kind of thing. In an emergency, they're the most readily available, easy to use kind of two-way radio out there. If all you need is short range tactical comms, just go to Wal Mart and buy all the radios and AA batteries they have on the shelves.
Using them to summon help in an emergency, on the other hand, is, as nmfire said, laughable. There are stories of people using them to get help, but they are rare instances of luck (or God's intervention). It's not practical on a large scale without government regulation, and even that probably wouldn't work. CB 9 all over again. The national SOS thing may have good intentions but it's not realistic or well thought out, which is why the ARRL has been very cool in its response to the idea.
We have a mobile radio in our dispatch center that has all the FRS channels in it. It is set up with several different groups of channels so it is very seldomely on the frs group