Thursday, April 14, 2005

The Joys of Scanning Part 1

In what I hope will be a continuous feature, I will sometimes spot post when I am engrossed in Scannerland and something that makes it all worth it goes down. Now that I once again have access to the LAPD's vast catalog of frequencies, it will happen more often than before.

Example: Last night about midnight: Patrol officers in the fine division of Hollywood began following a vehicle which turned out to be stolen. Though proper procedure dictactes a helicopter above and at least one back-up unit behind before affecting a traffic stop, sometimes the suspects just won't wait.

These guys certainly didn't and the two suspects fled in the vehicle initiating a short pursuit, which ended a mere two minutes later when the gentlemen crashed into a vehicle in cross-traffic and then lodged the stolen car against a light post. The inevitable and breathless radio transmissions followed with the LAPD officer asking for two ambulances: one for the unconcious driver of the suspect vehicle and a second for the innocent bystander who was also KO'd.

That, my friends, is a down and dirty Joy of Scanning moment, and it's why scanning is great. Because you don't have to be a cop or a suspect to enjoy the benefits of being both.

Link of the moment: Maui County EMS, Maui Hawaii. Not technically a SoCal site, but courtesy of DaveK, working hard and hardly working in Hawaii.

NOTE: Fun/Lame images will be added shortly.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

First Links

In celebration of my inaugural post, I have added two links to the right. The first is the most comprehensive frequency site I've ever encountered: It's run by a guy named Tracy Justus up in Ventura County. Sometimes it has formatting problems if you're running Internet Exploder, but try to close your "Favorites" tab before you load the site. (or, alternatively, stop being retarded and download Mozilla's Firefox. Word.)

The second, is the LAPD's official site: It's actually pretty comprehensive, and the section on each division is worth checking out. Tons of detail on the department, and in each divison, it provides summaries of crime in the particular areas written by the divisons' Senior Lead Officers. The "SLOs" (pronounced SLOWS) are senior officers who are assigned to liasion with particular neighborhoods in each division. You wont be able to hear them called SLOs on the LAPD's radio traffic, but the LAPD's site identifies them by their unit identifier, so if you were really diligent, and really gave a shit, you could correlate the two.

Later, however, I'll devote an entire post to the LAPD's radio system and why I spent $600 to buy a new scanner just to hear them. And then I'll tell you about my love/hate relationship with the LAPD's scanner traffic.

Code 6 Charles


I've recently decided the internet is not a "fad" as I've long
believed. I see the tempest of blogs swirling around me and I finally
gave in.

I have nothing at all to say. I do, however, listen to my scanner a
shitload. It has tons to say.

So, this is my site,

I have no affiliation with any public safety organization in Los Angeles City or County. I now live my workdays in a world far removed from Scannerland, but I have long been fascinated (and at times in my life intimately involved in public safety) with the lights and siren world. This site is an attempt to shed light, comment upon, make fun of, pass judgement and generally chronicle the comings and goings I hear on my scanner.

When I'm enjoying the relative solace of my home, I listen to my scanner much as others relax to the background noise of a CD or the hum of a television. At home, this provides me with between one and four hours of listening on any given day. I often fall asleep with the scanner buzzing on my bedside table. Pathetic? Maybe. But after about 15 years of listening, much of that in the City of Los Angeles, I think I know my shit.

In fact, I'm listening right now, and it's a pretty quiet night in the City of L.A. LAFD Engine 39 is working a traffic accident in the Van Nuys area where the Captain just requested three additional Basic Life Support Ambulances. Translation: Lots of banged up people, maybe some fake neck/back pain. It gets contagious when people in traffic accidents see other victims complaining of pain and getting the VIP ambulance treatment. Suddenly, the $$$$$ signs flash before their very eyes, and they start feeling the pain....

There are plenty of folks in Southern California who know more about radios, procedures, frequencies, the physics of radio waves and other assorted topics than I do. But I've got a good handle on the big picture, and the small details. And while there are Yahoo Groups, forums, and plenty of frequency database sites, all with message and comment boards attached, I've yet to see a good Scannerland blog. This is my attempt.

I'm a pretty busy guy, so I don't envision posting everyday. But every time I post, I'll add a scanner or public safety-related link to that section. That's the only goal I am setting for myself.

Welcome to Here we go.