Although fire appliances are able to send many updates to Fire Control via data links, during larger incidents Fire Control communicates with fire appliances using voice transmissions via a radio system. A system of standard radio messages and the NATO phonetic alphabet is used to ensure that radio communications are understood clearly.
Radio messages are used to confirm that a fire appliance is on route to or has arrived at an incident. They are also used to confirm what is involved at an incident and how the fire crews are going to deal with it. Fire Control also uses radio messages to pass fire appliances up-to-date information about incidents received from callers or other agencies.
The NATO phonetic alphabet is used by the military and other emergency services and is very useful when ensuring that letters that might be mistaken e.g. m and n or f and s, are heard correctly……..