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Radio Check - Reality Reality

Greg Glenn  (CTO, Pulse Signal)

Tim O'Brien  (Director of Strategic Development, Public Safety, Bird Technologies)

Steve Hronek  (Deputy CIO of the City of Glendale & System Manager of the ICI System JPA (ret.), currently CEO of Comsec Associates, Inc., ComSec Associates Inc)

Anderson Bennett  (FCC Enforcement Bureau Field Agent; Retired, Federal Communications Commission; Retired)

Pablo Boas  (RF Solutions Engineer, Redwood Electric Group)

Location: N261

Date: Wednesday, March 23

Time: 4:15 pm - 5:30 pm

Track: In-Building Wireless, Critical Infrastructure & Private Networks

Format: Short Course

Vault Recording: TBD

The current fire code standards (IFC and NFPA) call for the installation of signal boosters or other devices in buildings that do not have adequate radio coverage as defined by a fire code official. In the United States this process is regulated by the FCC rules. While the Fire Code standard states that the FCC rule must be followed, the fact is, an estimated 95% or more of installed signal boosters do not comply with the Federal rules regarding their use. In some cases, the FCC rules are blatantly ignored. These enhancement systems, that purportedly help our radio networks, are reducing coverage on those very networks. In many areas, these devices are creating officer safety issues by reducing the overall radio coverage and efficacy of the public safety radios systems. This is costing licensees countless thousands in labor to troubleshoot. These problems present themselves in many ways from officer complaints about coverage, to completely rendering public safety radio networks disabled. This presentation will include licensees, engineers, technicians, manufactures and retired enforcement officials presenting real-world examples and real-world discussion on the proper and legal ways to enhance our public safety radio networks. Our goal must be to build and enhance our First Responder radio networks so that they have coverage wherever they operate, both inside and out.


1.) An understanding of the FCC rules regulating the use of signal boosters and who is responsible for the proper operation of these devices.

2.) Why the current though process around radio system enhancement will end in the ultimate destruction of our LMR public safety radio networks.

3.) Why we must look at the use of signal boosters from an infrastructure stand point and not an individual building standpoint.

4.) An understanding of why coverage issues are always a "system" or infrastructure issue, not an "in building" issue.