By Paul Daquilante • Staff Writer • 

YamCo Watch shuts down as police scanners go silent

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Always appreciated the information I got from Yamco watch, I would know ahead of time, if there was an accident that I could avoid the traffic back up. But I do understand police safety is more important, then me knowing which way is quickest to drive home.

Bill B

Let’s face it, there is no transparency when it comes to communication from the McMinnville Police Department. It’s been that way for at least the last 7 years when we moved here. When there is the rare communication, it’s hours or days later. Fortunately, I found Yamhill Watch and was able to keep up with police actions, accidents, road closures etc. That was until MPD went encrypted. MPD does produce a useless (IMHO) monthly report detailing the number of calls made. How does that help the citizenry?

I understand the need for safety with the PD and FD, but there also is a need to know of imminent danger. Many police departments and other city agencies around the country have signed on with NIXL. Departments can provide immediate alerts to all that subscribe to the service. It’s free.


But, the police publish a weekly summary of calls and arrests. Shouldn't that be enough? /s


Is there any incident one can point to in Yamhill county in which an unencrypted transmission led to an officer being injured or put in danger? it seems like this is a solution to a problem that didn't exist. It would seems that as mentioned in the article a hybrid system allowing for encryption in extenuating circumstances would be just as effective.

Mac Grizzly

IMO, this situation can be explained in one word, Motorola. As soon as Mac decided to get onto Motorola the train was on the track and moving. Moto deeply discounted their equipment to get a foot in the door. Once in, they then used their marketing tactics to make Mac a communication island from the rest of the County. They use their proprietary equipment and software to paint agencies in a corner that they can only get out of with a pile of money. Newberg experiences it all the time. WCCCA sends them a notice that Motorola is going to end-of-life a certain product and a huge bill to upgrade. McMinnville bit the "officer safety" pill from Motorola then the rest of the County had to figure out how to talk to them. Again, proprietary radios and encryption. It simply encourages public safety secrecy. One solution would be to have a single channel or channels that are encrypted and officers move to that channel on an as needed basis. Leave the main operating/dispatching channel(s) unencrypted. If you really needed encryption, its then available without shutting out the entire world.


Mac Grizzly, I concur. Motorola has become the John Deere of radio.


Nicely done. Sending our heartfelt gratitude to Donny.