Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Common menu bar links

The RCMP celebrates 75 years of two-way radio communications

Still Going Strong

That was then (unsecure analog audio, 1939)
That was then
(unsecure analog audio, 1939)

This is now 
(digital encrypted audio, 2014)
This is now
(digital encrypted audio, 2014)

The RCMP started using two-way radio communications 75 years ago and, while computers, the Internet and digital smartphones have since taken the world by storm, two-way radio continues to provide the Force with consistently reliable communications making it one of the most essential police tools used to this day.

The following are just a few testimonials submitted by Members across Canada who have used two-way radio as a lifeline to relay critical information:

"As a young constable in High Level, Alberta, I was patrolling a very large remote area with only a few other police officers. Two-way radio communications was our lifeline and one of the most basic, reliable tools we had to do our job effectively and safely. Thirty-two years later, the critical role of radio hasn't changed. As commonplace as mobile phones have become in today's society, they are not necessarily the best tools in police and emergency situations. After 75 years in service, two-way radio is still one of our most essential tools providing officers with reliable, secure and instant communication."

A/Commr. Pierre Perron
Chief Information Officer, RCMP

"As telecommunication operators, our three core duty functions include answering request for service telephone calls from the public, monitoring the status of Members on duty and dispatching calls to Members via radio.

Clear, dependable radio communications are essential for operators, enabling us to accurately and efficiently communicate information to our Members and as such, to keep our Members and the public safe. It's difficult to imagine how we could communicate and work together as effectively without our radio system."

Rene Gougeon
Telecommunications Operator
"D" Division, Operational Call Centre

"Two-way radio communications have become a fundamental part of our job as officers. It allows us access to a wealth of information through instant communication with other team members and with our dispatchers. It gives us the ability to travel greater distances in the execution of our duties while remaining in constant contact with other officers, allowing us to be more effective in our service to the public while still maintaining officer safety. "

Cst. J Johnston
Cranberry Portage RCMP Detachment

"I worked on radio communications during a visit by the former American President, George W. Bush, and the Swissair Flight 111 crash at Peggy's Cove. During these and other high-risk events, I can tell you that officers relied on radio communication to connect with other team members and with their commanders. I recall at the 2001 Summit of Americas in Quebec, I was in our mobile unit looking at the video feed and scanning the crowd for rocks or other objects that could be used to jeopardize officer and public safety. I used the radio to get critical information to the officers on the front line -- it gave them extra eyes and ears to do their job and keep them safe."

Glenn Mason
Manager, IT Operations
"H" Division