We have since 2015 been involved in a continuous upgrade process of HBNW Watchcon systems including the radio network to provide:
- increased security of the users and responders
- expanded reception area to reach weak reception and currently no reception hot spots.
- easier implementation for future integration with neighbouring NW and other responder networks.
Old Analogue System
The old existing analogue system which supports Motorola CPO40, Kirisun PT5200 and Kirisun FP430 handsets will continue to operate at least until December of 2020. This 2 year sunset period is so that owners of these handsets can continue to benefit from them until the batteries fail and need to be replaced at which time it becomes more economical to make the transition onto the new digital network.
New Digital Network
The new digital network will support DP405 digital handsets and become active during February 2019.
Making the choice to change handsets now or later.
All active (Daily on air users) HBNW, CCP, Armed Response Officers, SAPS, Metro Law Enforcement reservists, Fire & Rescue, HB Volunteer Emergency Medical Service, SANPark Rangers responders will be transitioned to the new network by end February.
Members resident in areas that have weak reception on the old network such as Longkloof, Orangekloof and Hout Bay Heights or those whose batteries are already older than 2 years should consider buying a new handset to make the transition now.
The price of a new DP405 handset is R2,789
The DP405 digital handsets can operate on both old and new networks so responders on the new handsets can as the need arises still communicate directly with old handset users.
For reasons listed below we are introducing a monthly service fee whereby all radio owners contribute towards the Watchcon Operations and Systems fund.
The rate for new network users is R50 per month and the the old network users is R30 per month
The reasons for this Radio Fee are:
- To increase security - There are far too many radios unaccounted for. In the wrong hands these radios create more risk for our active responders. Members who suffer the loss or theft of a radio will want to cancel the debit order which will alert us to the loss so that we can take steps to remove that radio from the system thereby preventing non-members from monitoring our responder communications.
- The fee will cover ICASA licence fees and contribute to sustaining HBNWatchcon systems and operations.
The batteries of many of the older radios are over 2 to 3 years old and need to be replaced at a cost of between R350 to R550 rand per battery plus one may depending on condition get between R500 to R750 for a used radio. These values can be factored in as offsets against the price of the new digital radio.
If you are an active member:
- participating daily in scheduled patrols and operations
- reacting daily as a regular responder to incidents
- productively serving daily in our community safety structures
- donating R150 or more to the general HBNW fund
- NB: If you are an existing donor and want to cover your radio fee within your existing donation you will still be required to split the donation so that the radio fee operates as a distinct separate Debit Order.
You can apply via email@example.com to be exempted from the radio fee and or arrange the split of your existing donation.
Important Notes to Radio Holders:
Radio Holders may NOT sell, donate, loan or otherwise transfer the Radio to another person, without notifying HBNW Admin. Each Radio carries an Identity Code which allows the Watchcon Controllers to identify each Radio Holder. Radio Holders must make every effort to ensure that the radio is safely secured. If a radio is lost or stolen immediately report the loss to firstname.lastname@example.org.
APPENDIX 1: Radio Acquisition & Trade in Process
The Watchcon radio network links all Hout Bay and Llandudno first responders into a single common quick response network. Becoming a Watchcon radio owner is more than just acquiring another level of security for you and your family’s defence, it allows you to contribute towards improving your community’s safety.
A person requesting a radio must be a member of HBNW in good standing. Apply for membership here.
Radios must be ordered from email@example.com
EFT / Debit Order payments to be made to:
Account name: Hout Bay Neighbourhood Watch
Account no: 167 602 9133
Branch: Hout Bay
Branch code: 167 609
Reference: Radio: Name Surname
Radios must be collected from the Control Room Manager, Jarryd Scholtz, at Watchcon located at Earthworx corner of Valley and Victoria Road. Once all paperwork is confirmed to be in order, your radio will be programmed. You will be notified when the radios are ready for collection. Kindly bring your ID as proof of identification.
Trade in Process:
Deliver your old radio and charging unit plus any radio packaging you may have to HBNW Watchcon at Earthworx Cnr Valley & Victoria Road. Please have a label securely attached to the radio showing your name, cell phone number and email address. Collect a receipt for it detailing your contact information, the make and serial number of the radio you are handing in. When a suitable size batch of radios is accumulated we will notify potential buyers and attempt to secure a fair price. If we do mange to sell it the proceeds will be credited to your account.
Becoming a member of the HBNW and Watchcon network is your voluntary contribution to supporting a community organisation dedicated to preventing crime. HBNW and the Watchcon network are not in any way obligated to deliver security services to the protection of yourself or your property. Your participation in HBNW activities and use of the Watchcon network is undertaken entirely at your own risk and in so doing you agree to the terms as laid out in the Hout Bay Neighbourhood Watch Constitution as well as the “Western Cape Constitution and Code Of Conduct for Neighbourhood Watch Structures” under which HBNW operates. Please see Documents.