Question and Answer
What is Airwave / Tetra?
TETRA stands for Terrestrial Trunked Radio and is a digital standard for radio communication used by almost all Emergency Services in Europe. In the UK, the TETRA network for Emergency Services is called Airwave.
How does Blu Eye detect the presence of vehicles equipped with Airwave radio's?
Blu Eye detects the short (periodical) pulses the Airwave radio’s transmit with intervals of several seconds in order to be assured of a place in the network. As soon as these pulses are detected in the neighborhood of your vehicle, Blu Eye will alert you. This even happens when the Airwave radio’s are in standby only and not being used for communication (speech).
For which vehicles does Blu Eye warn you?
- Fire Engines
- Police (marked and unmarked vehicles)
- Highway Agency vehicles
Is it legal to use Blu Eye in Europe?
Yes, the use of Target Blu Eye is legal since the system is only informing the driver whether an Emergency Service is nearby. Moreover, Target Blu Eye does not make any difference between Police vehicles, Ambulances or Fire engines. You will be warned of all types of emergency vehicles. We would like to emphasize that Target Blu Eye is not able to decode the radio messages broadcasted by the Airwave / Tetra network.
In many countries in Europe, there is a ban on radar detectors. Is it possible Blu Eye be banned in the future as well?
In fact a strange question for a system that has proven to increase safety in traffic. In some countries this discussion started after Blu Eye was named a “police detector” and an “every crook’s must-have car gadget”. The chance that the foregoing statements will lead to a ban of Target Blu Eye almost zero. Blu Eye perfectly suits government campaigns to inform drivers what to do in case of approaching emergency service vehicles.
Radar detectors have been banned in many countries and this is due to the fact they serve one goal; inform drivers about the presence of radar speed traps. Blu Eye does not only warn drivers for Police vehicles but also for Fire Engines and Ambulances. Besides that, Blu Eye doesn’t make any difference between the 3.
Does Blu Eye alert for other radio signals then those coming from vehicles with Airwave / Tetra radio's on board?
No, Blu Eye only responds to signals transmitted by Emergency Services and thus is a very quiet traveling companion. However, since Blu Eye picks up the Airwave radio signals omnidirectional (in a circle around the vehicle) instead of only signals coming from the front or rear, you will also be warned for Emergency Services that will remain invisible for you. This may happen in urban areas. In these occasions you may decide to activate City Mode on the system in order be warned only if emergency services are real close.
At what distance does Blu Eye warn for approaching Emergency Services?
That depends on the factors below:
- If the standard antenna, to be installed in the car’s interior, is used: up to 500 meters.
- If the optional bumper-mount antenna (Panorama VCD-S1-5F), to be invisibly installed at the inside of the front- or rear bumper, is used: up to 1,200 meters.
- Environmental factors: in open areas and with low traffic, detection ranges are larger than in urban areas.
Does Blu Eye work abroad?
Blu Eye works all over Europe and partially in the countries below:
Austria : partially, network not completed before the end of 2017.
Spain : partially. Blu Eye does work in Catalunya, Basque Area and around all the big cities. Blu Eye does not work in the Spanish inland where the older TetraPol system is still in use.
Blu Eye does not work in:
France : uses the older TetraPol system.
Switzerland : uses the older TetraPol system.
Czech Republic : uses the older TetraPol system.
Italy : roll-out of the network starts in 2016.
Does Blu Eye always warn for approaching Emergency Services?
Blu Eye always alerts for radio signals transmitted by Emergency Services vehicles.
However, Emergency Services do not always transmit (periodic) radio signals. They can operate in 2 different modi, TMO and DMO.
In TMO (Trunk Mode Operation) the radio’s are connected to the Airwave network and always transmit periodical pulses that are received by Blu Eye. In DMO (Direct Mode Operation) the radio’s are not using the network and communicate direct to each other (walktie-talkie mode). No periodical pulses are transmitted under those conditions. DMO is not frequently used and when radio’s in DMO are used for communication (speech), they will be detected by Blu Eye.