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Tips for resolving interference issues amicably

by Urgent Communications contributor

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Jun 24, 2015

Nothing fouls up your ability to communicate with your teams in the field or back at the station more than interference. Sometimes it can be intentional; sometimes it is just accidental. Either way, you know it needs to stop, but you don’t know how to make that happen or where to turn for answers. The Enterprise Wireless Alliance (EWA) is here to help.

By EWA Staff

Spectrum is that thing that you can’t see, but must have in order to maximize your wireless communication system investments. And nothing fouls up your ability to communicate with your teams in the field or back at the station more than interference. Sometimes it can be intentional; sometimes it is just accidental. Either way, you know it needs to stop, but you don’t know how to make that happen or where to turn for answers.

The Enterprise Wireless Alliance (EWA) is here to help. EWA has many years of experience assisting licensees in the preliminary investigation of reports of radio interference in the Business/Industrial radio bands. Through a memo of understanding with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), EWA acts as a first tier where many complaints are resolved. Some, however, must be forwarded to the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau for action.

As the FCC moves to reduce and consolidate the staffing in its Enforcement Bureau—an effort designed to improve its effectiveness—interference resolution may take longer than anticipated, and users may want to develop alternative paths for resolving these cases.

The following provides tips to help you resolve interference issues so that they don’t escalate.

What is interference anyway?

Interference is anything that modifies, interrupts or disrupts a signal as it travels between the source and a receiver. Many types of interference exist, but FCC cares only about what it terms “harmful interference,” which it defines as “any emission, radiation, or induction which specifically degrades, obstructs, or interrupts the service” of a licensed station. The FCC places a priority on resolving cases of interference affecting public safety communications.

All other interference, the FCC calls “nuisance,” and users sharing channels must be willing to accept some level of “noise.”

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