The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

January 11, 2013

Weather now a key factor in building radio tower

Police waiting for completion to switch frequencies

OTTUMWA — Communication is vital in today’s world, and numerous emergency personnel are more than ready for the communications tower to go up.

Narrow banding is the focus, according to Ottumwa Police Chief Jim Clark.

“We’ll be switching frequencies from UHF to VHF, and we’re still in the process of that because the communications tower isn’t up yet,” Clark said this week.

Police won’t switch until the tower is up, and that now depends on the weather, he added. If the weather allows, some contractors could soon still pour concrete and build the footings for the tower.

Officials said the work could be done sometime in March or April, and officials could go ahead in putting the tower in the chosen spot on the Fourth Street hill. The area is near the former site of the old Washington Junior High School, which no longer exists.

“Once the tower is complete and the repeaters are on the tower, then we could switch to a different frequency,” Clark said.

State and federal agencies must have narrow banding completed by the end of this month.

“We have the licenses and are in the process of having equipment switched to narrow banding, which hss nothing to do with digital,” Clark said. “Once the equipment is all narrow-banded, our reception will be poor in lots of places in the city. It’s one of the primary reasons for going to VHF rather than UHF.”

Currently police are on UHF only and cannot communicate with other agencies, Clark said. When on VHF, police can communicate with the sheriff’s department, Iowa State Patrol and ambulance and fire units.

Clark also noted police are required to use narrow banding by Dec. 31. They have the licenses and the main thing shows the Federal Communications Commission that local police are working on the situation.

“They’re in the process of switching 40 portable radios and the ones in their patrol cars,” Clark said. “All have to be narrow-banded.”

That means an officer will have to open each radio unit and adjust some technical components inside the radio.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Ups and downs OTTUMWA — Iowa's governor and his lieutenant seemed thrilled with part of the employment news Friday. Gov. Terry Branstad's Twitter page said: "BREAKING: Iowa's employment reaches all-time high of 1,615,200." Iowa Workforce Development confirms the n

    April 18, 2014

  • 15-minutes.png A change at Evans

    OTTUMWA — You can get kids to memorize facts. But teaching them to think can take more time. Educational leaders told the Ottumwa school board that the school year that begins 2014 will shift Evans Middle School students from 45-minute periods to 60-

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Those who came before OTTUMWA — There is so much information on researching genealogy, beginners may not know where to start. But experts and knowledgeable amateurs will offer help as they gather for a free Family History Fair to share which websites are worthwhile and wh

    April 18, 2014

  • 0419 OTT Tree planting color photo -T -M -L Young Ottumwans show their green thumbs OTTUMWA — Several of Ottumwa’s cemeteries and parks were recipients of new trees this week as Ottumwa High School students and Eagle Scouts dedicated their time to planting dozens of trees around the city. Students from the OHS JROTC class were at Ot

    April 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • 0419 OTT Prayer Walk 2 bw photo -L -M -T On a journey OTTUMWA — The seven blocks through the center of Ottumwa took more than an hour and a half to walk as 25 people prayed and read Scripture to reflect on the events of Good Friday. Led by the Ottumwa Area Fellowship of Pastors, the walk began at First

    April 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0419 OTT drought map -L -T -M Drought weakens grip on Iowa OTTUMWA — Last weekend saw the first significant rains in quite some time for the Ottumwa area. How long? The last day with at least a half-inch of rain was back on Nov. 20. It was a welcome rain, arriving after the ground had thawed. That allowed at

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Eugene Clark STOCKPORT — Eugene Morris Clark, 90, of Stockport, died at 5:30 p.m. April 17, 2014, at Good Samaritan Health and Rehabilitation Center, Ottumwa. Graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Monday in Spencer Cemetery northeast of Stockport; Pastor Richard

    April 18, 2014

  • Civil War Round Table visited by baseball historian OTTUMWA — The Civil War Round Table was treated to a special guest Thursday night and a presentation about how baseball during the Civil War era helped shape Iowa as we know it. John Liepa, former history and political science professor at Des Moines

    April 18, 2014

  • Three-day forecast Today ... Sunny, with a high near 76. Breezy, with a southeast wind 10 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Tonight ... Partly cloudy, with a low around 53. Breezy, with a south wind 9 to 16 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph. Sunday ... Partly su

    April 18, 2014

  • 0418 OTT Tree City U.S.A. logo Ottumwa awarded as Tree City U.S.A. again OTTUMWA — Having big, beautiful trees throughout a community can help spruce up a city and make it more attractive to visitors. Ottumwa has shown a dedication to making the community more green and inviting, and the efforts have been recognized by th

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

Photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook
E-edition