[RFI] Crossed Signals article

Cortland Richmond ka5s at earthlink.net
Mon Jan 5 12:27:50 EST 2004

A well written article. You are maintaining the perspective one expects a newspaper to have. However, perhaps you should take sides.  The power companies say they observe the FCC interference limit. This may be so. (Field tests have show instances where those appear to have been exceeded.)  Too, some firms have already asked the FCC to increase the allowed level. But even if they met the present limit, that would not make the resulting interference acceptable.  Radio interference levels which might have sometimes been put up with, on isolated frequencies, here and there, are not acceptable all the time, everywhere, and at every frequency. 

An analogy might be local noise ordinances. Most towns have an ordinance forbidding noise after,9:00 PM or so. That shuts down the neighborhood garage bands so we can get some sleep.  But suppose every neighbor had a garage band? Wouldn't the all-day cacophony be too much to bear? Legal does not mean tolerable.

The FCC's public database shows 976 current Florida licenses for low-VHF spectrum between 30 and 50 MHz. This too is spectrum the electric companies want to send over power lines.  A reasonable analysis of interference potential shows substantial risk to users of these systems, who include the Florida State Patrol, other state government users, water and gas agencies, school boards and private businesses. The City of Tampa is one, and two Tampa hospitals, and the Hillsborough County school system.

And the Hurricane Net, on the Amateur Radio bands? Won't Florida need that?  It sounds like electric companies don't think so.

Cortland Richmond
ka5s at earthlink.net
Why Wait? Move to EarthLink.

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