FAQ

Got questions?

The following are a collection of questions we’ve received from CREST users.
If you have a question you’d like answered, please contact us.

What do I do if I have a problem?

To report a problem, go to the CREST website, and enter make a trouble report. Fill in the fields and hit send. For any urgent problem that requires immediate attention, staff can be reached 24/7 at 250.995.5199.

Should I do anything to my radio when I’m leaving the CRD?

Yes. If you are travelling outside of the CRD or CREST coverage area, it’s best to turn off your radio or turn it to a conventional radio channel (if available) to prevent affecting your agency’s communications while away.

Should I do anything to my radio when I’m leaving my jurisdiction?

Yes. If you drive outside of your agency’s home area for a mutual aid situation, you should switch to a channel that is used by an agency in the area you’ve entered. Doing so will maximize your signal strength/reception.

Where do I get my radio fixed?

To maintain the optimum performance of both the mobile and portable radios, CREST recommends using only qualified radio shops for any repair or maintenance work. When possible, deliver your radio to the CREST office at #110-2944 West Shore Parkway or RadioWorks at B7-555 Ardersier Road. For fixed equipment such as consoles and base stations, contact us to arrange for service.

Are there things I can do to improve the audio on my radio?

Yes. To maximize audio quality:

  • Speak directly into the radio’s microphone, and avoid putting your hand over it to press the transmit button.
  • Leave a little room between your mouth and the microphone — about four finger widths.
  • Turn off your portable radio if you’re in a vehicle with a mobile radio or in close proximity to other radios to avoid audio feedback loops.
  • Protect the microphone from the wind. Try turning your back to the wind, or if possible, cupping the microphone with your hands.
How do I speak to emergency service providers from another agency?

To speak to emergency service providers from another organization, a mutual aid or FAP (Fire, Ambulance, Police) channel can be used. Contact your communications or training officer to determine your organization’s operational guidelines.

What do the battery charge lights mean?

Flashing red = Battery not serviceable, return to CREST

Flashing yellow/orange = If the battery is very warm or cold, charging will start later, otherwise return to CREST

Steady red = Battery is charging and should not be used

Flashing green = Battery is still charging, but is at 90% or above

Solid green = Fully charged and ready for service

Flashing red/green = Battery not serviceable, return to CREST

Steady yellow/orange = Battery is undergoing a reconditioning cycle

How do I know if my battery is running low?

If your radio is chirping like a bird, this is a warning that the battery is compromised and must be replaced at the earliest opportunity. Although you may be able to listen and talk on your radio, a low battery can seriously affect your radio’s range and audio performance.

What do I do if I accidentally hit the emergency button on the radio?

If you accidentally activate the emergency button on your radio, it can be canceled by holding down the emergency button until you hear the cleared emergency tone and ‘EMERGENCY’ no longer appears on the display screen.

What do I do if I can’t get coverage?

Your radio should automatically roam to the best available site during normal periods of operation. However, electronic interference can affect site selection. To manually change the site your radio is affiliated to, press and hold the site select/affiliation button until you hear a second tone.

What do I do when I get a busy signal?

If you receive a busy signal, release the PTT button. The system automatically queues your call and will process it when a channel becomes available. While waiting – which on average takes just 1 second — listen for a go-ahead tone and then press the PTT button to proceed with your call.

Where should I wear my radio?

Where radios are worn matters:

  • A portable radio worn on the hip under the arm gets significantly less signal strength,
  • The same portable radio worn on the hip with the antenna swiveled from the body has considerably better coverage, and
  • The same radio worn at chest level has the best coverage.
What are the advantages of using talk groups?

They bring all responders onto a common radio channel, allowing real-time, direct command and conversations.

How do I know what channel or talk group to use during a critical event?

The dispatcher for the area you are working within will advise on the talk group and channel you should use during a critical event.

How do I know when to use a talk group?

If you are responding to a critical incident that requires multi-agency response, you may be directed to either an FAP (Fire, Ambulance, Police) or mutual aid channel. Consult your organization’s operational guidelines for more information on when to use a talk group.