Tri-Cities Scanner Frequencies
October 2009 Newsletter

Listen to the live scanner at:

  • Washington County, TN Digital
  • Weather Radio Drawing II
  • Abingdon, VA Digital
  • Raccoon Season - Tracking Collars
  • Winter Weather is here
  • Halloween
  • Twitter Changes
  • Plane Crashes (locator transmitters)

Well Since the last newsletter, we've found a lot of new frequencies...
Here's a sample of what's new....
Output Input Tone Description
151.0400 153.7750 97.4 Wayne County KY Sheriff
152.8850 160.1700 d731 Carter Co School Buses - Roan Mtn
152.9750   151.4 Tazewell Co School Buses -Springville
153.6650   d331 AirEvac Aeromedical  Whitley County
154.7550 156.0150 100.0 Unicoi Co Sheriff TAC
154.7850 155.8200 d315 Pikeville Fire Department
154.8150 158.8500 118.8 Flyod County KY Sheriff
155.2050   186.2 Air Methods Areomedical
159.1200 154.0100 118.8 Boone County, WV Fire Departments
159.3300   151.4 TN Forestry
159.4200   131.8 NC State Parks- Mt Jefferson SP
166.9500   100.0 TVA Police
169.6750   103.5 TVA Police
460.2000 465.2000 146.2 Tazewell Co, VA Fire Departments

That's just a couple, check out the Radio Phonebook (Link at the end of newsletter)

Washington County, TN Digital System

Last month we reported on some of the new equipment.

As Promised, Washington County Tennessee’s new digital system has begun testing and is in
the process of being brought fully online. Reports initially were that a majority of the traffic would
utilize encryption and be impossible to monitor. Thankfully, our sources indicate that only a few
of the talkgroups will be encrypted, such as: Narcotics, Swat, Detectives, etc. We may never know
all the encrypted talkgroups, however with the absence of certain departments during incidents, it
shouldn’t be too difficult to determine them by process of elimination.

So far here’s what we know…
Here are the new P25 Digitial frequencies, currently the highlighted ones are active

854.0125     859.2125
856.2125     859.5875
857.2125     859.6875
858.21250     860.2125

857.2125 is currently being used as the control channel

So far only a few "testing" talkgroups have been reported, One agency in the county has recently applied for a license to operate on the same type of technolgy, Embereeville FD will be utilizing P25 on the following frequencies.

Embreeville Volunteer Fire Department

154.3850 Mobile and Repeater Output
156.0600 Mobile and Repeater Input

Both of these frequencies will be used in P25 digital format, so you'll need a digital capable scanner as well.
Theres a good possibility the radios will be used in both modes, clear audio and P25. You should be able to
listen to some traffic for a while with your older scanner until all their radios are replaced.

We'll keep you posted as more become available, in the meantime we need your help!
If you live in the area and have a digital scanner, see if you can pickup any addtional talkgroups.

Need more info on Digital Scanners?
Check out some of the digital capable scanners. - Equipment

Weather Radio
Sign up Now!
Click Here
First Drawing was

Congratulations to
Dan from
Cedar Bluff !

Remaining entries with the exception
of the 10-01-2009 winner will be
drawn at a later date.
In an effort to get more
people to the site, we're
giving away 1 addtional
brand new weather alert
radios. Be sure to click the
link above and sign up!
Complete details and contest
rules at the link above.
Specifications at Radio

Abingdon Fire and Police aquire new Radios

Also pictured is a mobile version

click each for larger

The town of Abingdon, VA has been testing a new digital system on 154.385. The emissions were first noted on or around October 9th as a loud 4 second digital carrier repeated every several minutes. Further analysis revealed that the signals were a digital format called MotoTRBO. A quick check of the FCC database shows this frequency licensed to the town with the attention to field being the Abingdon Police Department.  Further research and field testing have been unsuccessful in locating the source of the transmissions, originally believed to originate from the “water tower” hill south of Valley St as indicated on the license. The input frequency 158.865 has been silent and the output mentioned above can be heard clearly in Johnson City, TN and Elizabethton, TN to the south as well as Marion and Rural Retreat to the northeast.

An unnamed source advised that the fire department had acquired the new equipment, supposedly to be Motorola XPR-6550 handhelds (list price $970.00 each) and a XPR-8300 repeater (list price $2500.00). We were also advised that the police department had access to and was using the frequencies as well, additionally there was mention that this frequency was also tied via a VOIP type connection to another system currently used by the town.The radio model and repeater above only operate at UHF frequencies, so were suspecting they are using the repeater used by the public works department or have a different frequency. We are questioning the validity of this infromation in reguards to the current FCC license allowances.

On a side note, the frequency 154.385 is only licensed for fire service operations, so If they are operating in compliance with federal law I would suspect only the fire department will be utilizing the 154.385 frequency. Why they bought UHF radios, is somewhat of a mystery. Also in the top story, Embreeville Fire Department is licensed for the same frequency, what a conicidence! Let's just all hope they are not just picking a frequency and setting up a repeater with no reguard to the licensing.
We’ll keep an eye on the license data to see if an exemption or modification is granted.

Now for some bad news, MotoTRBO is a digital format similar to Nextel that no scanner can monitor. Abingdon was the first in the area to use MotoTRBO with the public works frequency and now that technology has possibly spread to the other agencies. The biggest advantage over security is that each frequency can support two simultaneous transmissions at the same time.  

Raccoon Huntin'

Raccoon season has more to do with radio signals than meets the eye, two-way radios, and radio tracking collars are a starter. Times have changed for the better and worst, but that question really depends on how you look at it. Back in the good’ ole days people set their dogs out at dark and chased after them into the abyss with only the sounding of howls and bells attached to their collars. Communications from the hunters was limited to whistles and hoots and hollers.. Then comes along technology!

Today, the practice is augmented with two-way radios and signal emitting transmitters that can be used to pin-point the dogs location and even whether or not the’re looking up, barking, moving, still, or pointing. Some models rely on a rudimentary signal that must be tracked with a directional antenna while others send the dog’s latitude and longitude out via radio. Communications have evolved much since the Andy Griffith days; remember those big old military walkie talkies? Currently, FRS/GMRS and even MURS radios give reliable communications for several miles.

Well now for the good stuff, lets get right to it

Analog Transmitters
(216.000-220.999 MHz FM)

It may be best to search this range as
some manufacturers promise many more than 80 frequencies.

Just keep walking till the beeping gets louder...


Directional Antenna / Receiver
& Transmitter Collars

The radio term "attenuate" means to throttle or reduce, the application term refers
to what's called an attenuator. The hunter's radio receiver is usually equipped with an attenuator; The gain of the signal can be selected so when close to the dog the signal can reduced to allow a more accurate fix on the position.

Common Tracking Collar Frequencies

216.005 217.005 218.005 219.005 220.005
216.055 217.055 218.055 219.055 220.055
216.105 217.105 218.105 219.105 220.105
216.155 217.155 218.155 219.155 220.155
216.205 217.205 218.205 219.205 220.205
216.255 217.255 218.255 219.255 220.255
216.295 217.295 218.295 219.295 220.295
216.365 217.365 218.365 219.365 220.365
216.405 217.405 218.405 219.405 220.405
216.455 217.455 218.455 219.455 220.455
216.505 217.505 218.505 219.505 220.505
216.555 217.555 218.555 219.555 220.555
216.605 217.605 218.605 219.605 220.605
216.655 217.655 218.655 219.655 220.655
216.705 217.705 218.705 219.705 220.705
216.755 217.755 218.755 219.755 220.755

Digital "GPS" Transmitters

(MURS - Data only)

While entirely possible to
listen for data on the frequencies
to the left, the best effect is when
a specially made GPS receiver
receives the data bursts and maps
the data. The biggest advantage here
is that the hunter can use an ominidirectional antenna mounted on the outside of
the vehicle. This makes mobile tracking
much more efficient and less time consuming,
you simply drive or walk to the dogs.
If you hear weird sounding bursts on these frequencies while near a wooded area, theres a good chance they are tracking collars.

Tracker Maxima™
Analog Radio




Garmin Astro™ GPS

And last but not least, the raccoon hunters here in Virginia have been frequently using Marine VHF radios for communications, technically illegal (unless being used nautically.) This practice is becoming more and more widespread and has been reported to have been used by alleged poachers in central VA.

Heres a couple hits from our last mountaintop excursion.


Its Getting Cold!

It's that time of year, here's a refresher on Snow Plows, and School Buses.
How else are you going to know what the road conditions are at 5AM.

Snow Plows, Salt Trucks
453.2500 Bristol VA Public Works
151.1300 Sullivan Co Public Works (Snow)
159.6300 TME  Interstate Service
451.9500 TME  Interstate Service
43.7800 TME  Interstate Service Repeater
159.9450 TME  Interstate Service Repeater
47.2800 VDOT - Mobile (Abingdon Area) - CH 3
47.3000 VDOT - Oakwood (Buchanan County)
47.3400 VDOT (Abingdon Residence) - CH 2
47.2200 VDOT (Bristol Area) - CH 27
47.2400 VDOT (Lee County Area) - CH 6
47.3000 VDOT (Russell County Area) - CH 4
47.2000 VDOT (Tazewell Residence) - CH 34
47.0800 VDOT (Wise County) - CH 32
45.7600 VDOT -Mobile - CH 25
45.0000 VDOT -Mobile - CH 49
School Buses / Schools
461.3000 Bristol TN Schools Maintenance
155.2350 Buchanan Co VA Schools
46.5600 Buncombie Co NC Schools
150.9650 Carter Co Schools Holston Mtn Repeater
152.8850 Carter Co Schools Roan Mtn Repeater
463.6250 Carter Co TN Schools  Link
463.3250 Daniel Boone High School
464.1000 David Crockett High School
154.9800 Johnson County TN Schools
155.0250 McDowell County Schools
453.8000 Scott Co Schools
159.7650 Smyth Co Schools Marion
159.5700 Smyth Co Schools Sugar Grove
45.5200 Sullivan Co School Buses
151.5500 Tazewell Co School Buses  County
152.9750 Tazewell Co School Buses Springville
460.2250 Washington Co VA Schools
453.1500 Washington Co VA Schools CH 2
460.1000 Wise Co Schools FB2 High Knob
458.9250 Wise Co Schools MO

Russell County Schools - Trunked System (shared)


Sullivan County, TN Trunked System

33296 School Buses   Kingsport
33328 School Buses
33360 School (DB)
33392 School Maintenance   DB (Mentioned as East CH)
33424 School Buses
33456 School
33488 School  M3, Jefferson 3


With the increase in crime over the past several months, its probably a given that October 31st will be a busy night, Be sure to check out the live scanner feed and follow the latest on twitter. We're up for an all nighter, care to join us?

Live Feeds - Twitter

Twitter Changes

Due to some issues with Spam and "Scanner Haters" we've decided to make our tweets "protected". Just send a request and it'll be approved as soon as possible.
As for the later reason, we've decided to practice the concept of "not feeding the trolls" and its working. In the future most of your incident reports will primarly be posted to our twitter account. If you see our infromation somewhere else getting flamed or bashed, put in a good word, you wouldnt be reading this if you didnt just love.. Scanie the scanner!

Hug Please?

Plane Crashes

There have been at least two plane crashes in the immediate area since the last newsletter, tragically one with two fatalities in Carter County, and the other miraculously had three survivors in Russell County.

In the event of a crash planes are equipped with an emergency locator transmitter,
These operate on the following frequencies:

Aviation ELT's 121.500 AM   Civilian
Aviation ELT's 243.000 AM   Military (now mostly digital, except handhelds)
Eperb, Elts 400.000 digital   Satellite Detected

Immediately following a crash in the area you can help search and rescue teams by listening to the above frequencies, we recommend if you hear the siren sound (examples below) you use the non-emergency phone contacts listed in last months newsletter as emergency 911 circuits would be busy and need to be left open. In several incidents local amateur radio operators have actively listened for traffic on these frequencies and coordinated traffic with local search teams.

Since February, 2009 the 121.500 frequency is no longer monitored via military satellites.. Thus, leaving downed aircraft without the newer digital Eperb type aboard to only be monitored locally by ground crews or local search aircraft.
If the elt battery is dead or if the tail is destroyed (elts are usually in the tail) there will be no signal

If there’s an active distress beacon it will sound like a siren.
Here’s a few recordings..(wav format)
Sample 1
Sample 2
Sample 3

And here’s lot’s more info from Wikipedia.

By the way, if you live near an airport these are sometimes activated by accident or by hard landings automatically. However, either case.. they usually get a response from the Civil Air Patrol, I know several longtime pilots that have had their life-time most embarrassing moment to see teams show up at their private hanger due to accidental activation.

Heres a sneak of next month's Article

We'll take you along on a radio field trip and share some of our frequency gathering secrets!

Mobile EVDO Internet

Portable Antenna deployed 50 feet up


Recent FCC Licenses
These are yet to be confirmed as active, however its not a bad idea to go ahead and program them in if live near their respective service areas. They have been hand picked from hundreds of new licenses.

Awaiting new updates 10/23/2009
    FB - Base
MO- Mobile / Portable Use
FB2 - Repeater
FB2C - Repeater with interconnect
FB6C - Shared Repeater
FX1- Link to Repeater

You can search for FCC
licenses on the
Research page.



State County Agency Callsign Frequency Type Notes
TN Greene Greeneville Aviation Service WOW6 122.7000 - Aviation OPS AM
VA Lee LEE, COUNTY OF  WQKM331 154.1000 FB2 New VFD Repeater
VA Lee LEE, COUNTY OF  WQKM331 156.0750 FX1 Thomas Walker VFD
VA Buchanan Buchanan County PSA WQKP478 173.3250 - Water Telemetry
TN Sullivan O REILLY AUTOMOTIVE WQKQ252 452.3000 - Mobile and Bases
TN Sullivan O REILLY AUTOMOTIVE WQKQ252 452.3375 - Mobile and Bases
TN Greene O REILLY AUTOMOTIVE WQKP829 452.9750 - Mobile and Bases
TN Washington Nuclear Fuel Services WNQK722 806.0000 MO Trunked SMR
TN Washington BIODEC INC WPFP336 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington TYPECRAFT INC WPFP914 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington Herby, John WPFM760 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington HERBY, JOHN WPFP921 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington Herby, John WPFM756 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington RAABE, RICHARD WPFP910 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington HERBY, MARTHA A WPFP917 809.0000 MO Conventional
TN Washington RAABE, RICHARD WPFP910 854.0375 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington BIODEC INC WPFP336 854.1375 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington HERBY, MARTHA A WPFP917 854.2375 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington HERBY, JOHN WPFP921 854.3125 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington Herby, John WPFM756 854.3375 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington Herby, John WPFM760 854.6375 FB2C Conventional
TN Washington Nuclear Fuel Services WNQK722 856.1625 FB2C Trunked SMR
TN Washington Nuclear Fuel Services WNQK722 857.1625 FB2C Trunked SMR
TN Washington Nuclear Fuel Services WNQK722 858.1625 FB2C Trunked SMR
TN Washington Nuclear Fuel Services WNQK722 859.1625 FB2C Trunked SMR
TN Washington TYPECRAFT INC WPFP914 860.5875 FB2C Conventional

        Need the Professional Version of local frequencies?

Download the Radio Phonebook (Updated 10/20/2009

Stats / Last Months Stats

Frequencies:1340 up from 1284
Unit Numbers:2894 up from 2858

General Area Covered


Here's what we're working on...

Mobile Data Solutions
Local Business Radios
Field Gear Pictures
Homemade Antennas
New Trunked Systems
Washington County TN Digital
Pager effects Pt2

Follow me!
That's it for now, Happy Scanning!

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