In 2020, there were 29,452 fire departments in the United States. Out of 1,042,200 firefighters, 35% of them were career firefighters, and the rest were volunteers.
Firefighters are known for often using a two-way radio for communication. This allows different firefighters to keep in touch with others who may not be around.
In some situations, two-way radios can be very important when it comes to life-threatening situations. This is something that other kinds of departments use for clear communication.
Keep reading to find out what two-way radio mistakes you should be avoiding.
1. Speaking Too Loudly
Even the best two-way radios are going to have issues when you are communicating with others. This is usually due to the person using the radios, not the radios themselves.
A common problem is having someone talk too loudly into the handheld two-way radios. This makes it difficult for the other person to hear and understand what is being said.
Sensitive information may also be leaked this way if there are others nearby. There is no reason to talk loudly into two-way radios since they transfer sound well.
2. Speaking Too Soft
Another two-way radio mistake to avoid is talking too soft. Even with a two-way radio headset, it can be difficult to understand what the other person is saying.
This can slow down communication as everyone is trying to understand each other. Your voicemail also be so low that the other person thinks there is something wrong with the radio.
All you need to do is talk at a normal volume. Speak like you would if the person were standing right in front of you.
It’s also important to make sure you are speaking in a clear tone. This is a huge problem when it comes to using radios since the conversation can sound muffled.
You may be speaking too fast and stumbling over your words. Or you may be holding the microphone or radio too close to your mouth.
These are all things that will make it difficult to understand what you are saying. If what you are saying is important, this can be a huge issue.
3. Interrupting the Other Person
Another common mistake when using two-way radios is interrupting each other. It is very easy to interrupt the other person without meaning to.
To avoid this, you need to wait until the transmitting end is finished. Then you will be able to speak back to them without the risk of interrupting.
This is important because interruptions slow down the conversation. They may have to backtrack and repeat what they were previously saying.
Or you may miss out on important information that you need to know. This is why some firefighters use a radio code to finish what they are saying.
The other person may say over when they are finished so that you know you can begin talking. This is a great way to avoid interrupting and missing out on information.
4. Not Choosing the Right Radio
It is also important that you choose the right kind of radio for your team. The best two-way radio should fit all of the needs you need when it comes to communication.
King Radios offers a variety of radio options for all kinds of situations. This includes handheld radios, two-way radios, and radio headsets.
5. Assuming It’s Private
A big mistake that many people make is assuming that radios are private. The reality is that other people could be listening in on your radio conversation.
There is no guarantee that the conversation is private unless it is completely encrypted. Encrypted radios are usually used by police officers for better security.
But when it comes to firefighters, this precaution isn’t always taken. Because of this, it is important to remember that the conversation may not be completely secure.
If possible, you should avoid disclosing private information over two-way radios. Never disclose classified information or personal information as a precautionary measure.
6. Incorrect Storage
Something you may not have thought about is how you store your radio. These technology devices need to be stored in a safe way to prevent damage.
An environment that is too hot or cold could impact this device. Moisture is also a big concern as it could cause the radio to malfunction.
This is why you should not store these radios in any extremes. For instance, on a hot day, you should not keep your radio in your vehicle.
You should also make sure it’s protected from moisture and isn’t left anywhere freezing. This will help your radio to stay in tip-top condition for much longer.
That way, it will be usable and in working order when you need it the most.
7. Losing the Radio
Aside from the mistake of storing your radio incorrectly, you could also lose it. The last thing you want to do is lose your radio as this is an expensive piece of equipment.
You may find that you need to communicate with someone, but you don’t have it on you. This is why you need to have a designated space for this radio.
You may attach it to your belt or put it in your pocket or keep it in your vehicle. No matter where you store it, that is where it needs to always be kept.
If you are often moving your radio around, the risk of losing it is higher. This could result in you losing this expensive piece of equipment forever.
8. Leaving the Radio On
When you are charging your radio, you should not leave the radio on. This is an easy mistake to make as you may not even realize this is a bad thing.
The problem with leaving the radio on is that it can degrade the quality of the batteries. This is also why you should not use your radio while it is being charged.
You should always turn off the radio before you start to charge it. Do this at a convenient time when you know you will not need it for communication.
Taking this precaution will help the battery to stay in good condition for much longer.
9. Not Securing the Radio
No matter where the radio is, it should be secured. The last thing you want is for your radio to become scraped up and damaged too quickly.
As a firefighter, you are entering all kinds of situations. Because of this, your boss will understand if you are radio sustains wear and tear.
But it is important to make sure you still try to take good care of it. After all, this is an important piece of equipment that would need to be replaced if it became too damaged.
If you are stationary, you should try to secure it in a safe place. You may have a specific drawer for it, or you may put it in your storage locker.
If you are out and about, you may want to invest in a holster for it. Or you could put it in a relatively small pocket where it will not be at risk of falling out.
Why Use a Two-Way Radio?
When you think of two-way radios, you probably think of Boy Scouts or camping trips. But these radios have a lot more purposes than just that.
Many industries use radios, including firefighters and police departments. They are considered to be one of the best ways to communicate in emergency circumstances.
Radios allow you to communicate with other people on your team within seconds. You don’t have to dial their phone number or wait for them to pick up.
Multiple people can also have radios so that everyone is communicating with each other. When it comes to firefighters, this is an invaluable tool to help everyone stay safe.
Anyone could benefit from using two-way radios if they need to communicate with someone else. They are often more dependable than phones that are easier to damage.
Two-Way Radio: Mistakes to Avoid
If your department is using two-way radio communication, there are mistakes to avoid. Everyone should go through training in how to use these radios.
Common mistakes like interrupting each other or talking too loud can cause issues. Make sure everyone understands how to communicate so that no information’s lost.
In some circumstances, your radios may come in handy for life-threatening situations. You may need to efficiently communicate with others on your team fast.
Are you interested in purchasing the best two-way radios for your team? Contact us today at King Radios to view our selection of high-quality radios.