As from 8 March 2016 police radio communications for Moreton Police District will transition from current analogue radio channels to the digital Government Wireless Network (GWN) – therefore rendering Police radio scanners useless because they cannot decipher the encrypted and authenticated communication.
This is a long way from the infancy of first Queensland Police radio transmissions in 1935 form a single transmitter from the old Police Depot in Petrie Terrace, Brisbane.
What does the GWN mean to the Moreton community? The GWN is a new integrated digital wireless network which will improve communications, safety and security for Queensland’s public safety agencies. The network will have the ability for cross-agency communication between public safety organisations.
Whilst this is better overall for police and emergency services operations and officer safety, it means that the ability to listen to radio communications on scanners or mobile applications will no longer exist.
With this in mind, Superintendent Michael Brady has given a commitment to work closer with media organisations such as 4510TV, local radio station 101.5FM and the papers to ensure information of public interest is still made available.
“There have been a few types of people that used Police radio scanners,” Superintendent Brady said in a media briefing. “Those for a hobby, those in the media for news purposes and these two were very helpful to us and the community at times.
“But there have also been the bad guys that listen in and then call their mates to let them know that we’re (Police) on our way so get out of there.”
The new system will also have GPS capabilities, so the location of patrol cars and radios on officers is known at all time. This will increase efficiency and safety.