UK Fire Fighter's Alerter County Codes
When the fire brigade analogue alerters were replaced in the nineteen eighties with digital devices, the Home Office Department of Telecommunications, who provided emergency services with their radio equipment, decided to adopt the POCSAG digital paging standard operating on a frequency of 147.800 MHz according to specification MG4.
Paragraph 11.4 of Fire Service Manual - Volume 1
MG4 calls for the use of alerters working to the POCSAG format which are produced by virtually all manufacturers, and uses a 7 digit numeric address or RIC (Receiver Identity code).
The Home Office instituted a numbering scheme whereby the last three digits are fixed for each Brigade. The POCSAG code allows the first four digits to range from 0000 to 1999, a total of 2000 codes per Brigade.
Each Brigade can decide how to deploy the 2,000 codes, by observation it generally appears the first two digits 'TT' define the team and type of callout and the next two digits 'SS' for the station number followed by the county code 'CCC'. creating the seven digit format TTSSCCC. Example: 0113225 = Team B at Station 13 (Rothwell) Northamptonshire. All team members have similar pagers that respond to the same RIC. Originally the alerters were tone only, generating one tone for call-out and a second tone for routine testing of the callout communications systems. Some Brigades have introduced text pagers and others have more complex arrangements in place.
The allocation of the last three digits of the RIC have been discovered by observation. The sequence is based on county names in alphabetical order, with each county being separated by eight. Those counties that have not been observed are a prediction based on the county sequence, but could be different - treat with caution. Since the introduction of digital alerters many Brigades have combined and may use just one or both the codes.
The County Codes
|East Sussex|| ||113|
|Hereford and Worcester||145||145|
|London N & S||369||369|
|Mid & West Wales||385||385|
| || || |
|Greater Manchester|| ||Note B & C|
|North Yorkshire|| ||Note B|
|Scilly|| ||Note B|
|Tyne and Wear|| ||Note B|
|West Midlands|| ||Note B & C|
|West Sussex|| ||Note B|
|Wiltshire|| ||Note B|
| || || |
List Updated 04-OCT-2020
- A) Codes 377 - 433 may have been used by Welsh brigades in the order; Clwyd, Dyfed, Gwent, Gwynedd, Mid-Glamorgan, Powys, South Glamorgan & West Glamorgan, prior to their 1996 merger into Wales North, Mid and South.
- B) Unable to safely predict these codes, but they may fit in the gaps between 305 to 353.
- C) Greater Manchester and the West Midlands do not have any retained stations, therefore may not have an allocation.
Nothing is known about the allocation of RIC codes within Scotland the frequency of 148.7 MHz used to operate their alerters being diiferent from the rest of the UK.
I am most grateful to alan4694 and wrr6 who have contributed the majority of the codes listed. If you have discovered any of the missing "Actual" county codes, please get in touch with me, so the list can be updated for everyone's benefit.
Show Steve's EMAIL