Police 10 Codes Explained
Police Codes as they are often called are signals police officers, law enforcement officials, and government agencies use to talk in two-way radio communications to each other. The codes are numbers that correspond to words, phrases, and messages frequently used in law enforcement work.
Police officers in the field communicate with dispatch, secondary officers, supervisors, administration, support divisions, the local jail, and police agencies. Primarily, the codes help shorten communication and add a layer of secrecy. Plus, they help shield communications from the general public.
History of Police Code?
Police ten codes were developed between 1937-1940 by Charles Hopper, the communications director with the Illinois State Police and expanded in 1974 by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials-International (APCO). During this time the Association of Public Safety Communication Officials expanded the use of police radio codes to make them briefer and to standardize message traffic.
The radio code signals were invented to help reduce the use of speech on the police radio. In addition, the codes enable a certain amount of privacy to radio transmissions. Meaning that someone must know the meaning of the signals to understand the discussion.
Official Police Ten Codes
There is no genuinely universal or official set of police 10 codes. Therefore, the meaning of a particular scanner code or signal can vary between one police jurisdiction and another. For example, police departments in the state of California will likely use different codes and signals than the state of Florida, New York, or Texas.
At first, law enforcement’s ten signals were intended to be a concise, standardized system to help officers and officials talk on the radio. However, the proliferation of different meanings has rendered it somewhat useless. Most commonly, in situations where people from different agencies and jurisdictions need to communicate with one another.
In 2005, the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) began discouraging using ten-codes and other law enforcement radio signals. This was due to their high variability in meaning between departments and agencies. Hence, the Department of Homeland Security may discontinue the use of the signals.
Many police departments around the country use regular English during radio conversations to ensure communication clarity. This makes things easier for the officer and dispatch. As a result, they don’t have to mentally refer back to the list of ten codes to decipher a transmission. However, this approach does eliminate any secrecy or privacy from the radio transmission.
In addition, the meaning of the unique codes may vary between police officers and other public service units. For example, Emergency Medical Services (EMS), fire departments, and other law enforcement units.
10-4 Meaning Police
A Police 10 code that you will hear a lot amongst public service is 10-4 which means:
- Message Recieved
Following is a list of some of the most common police codes. Again, it is essential to note that there is no universal set of police ten codes. Usage varies between departments, states, and agencies.
|10-4||Message Received, OK, Affirmative|
|10-5||Relay this information to|
|10-6||Officer is busy|
|10-7||Out of service, Unavailable|
|10-9||Please repeat message|
|10-10||Negative or no, also off duty|
|10-10A||Off duty at home|
|10-11||Dog or other animal case|
|10-13||Civilians present and listening|
|10-15||Enroute to station with suspect|
|10-19||Return to station|
|10-21||Place a phone call to|
|10-23||Stand by on this frequency|
|10-25||Report in person (meeting)|
|10-27||Vehicle registration request|
|10-28||Arrests/Warrants found on drivers license|
|10-29||Arrests/Warrants found on the vehicle|
|10-30||Unecessary use of police radio|
|10-31||Crime or criminal act in progress|
|10-32||Gun / Firearm|
|10-33||Emergency traffic / Hold routine messages|
|10-34||Radio frequency open / Cancels 10-33|
|10-35||Major crime alert|
|10-36||What is the correct time of day|
|10-37||Suspicious vehicle investigation|
|10-38||Suspicious vehicle stopped or stopping|
|10-39||False alarm, premises occupied|
|10-40||False alarm, premises appears secure|
|10-41||Beginning tour of duty|
|10-42||End of watch, ending tour of duty|
|10-44||Permission to leave|
|10-45||Fueling police vehicle|
|10-47||Emergency road repair needed|
|10-48||Traffic standard repair needed|
|10-49||En route to an assignment|
|10-51||Tow truck needed|
|10-53||Road blocked at|
|10-54||Animals or livestock on highway|
|10-55||Security checked / Intoxicate driver|
|10-57||Hit and run accident or Property damage|
|10-60||In the vicinity, lock out|
|10-61||Personnel in area|
|10-62||Reply to message|
|10-63||Clear to copy info|
|10-64||Message for local delivery|
|10-65||Net message assignment|
|10-66||Net message cancellation|
|10-67||Person calling for help|
|10-69||Confirms message recieved|
|10-70||Prowler, fire alarm|
|10-75||In contact with (Name)|
|10-76||Officer en route, on the way|
|10-77||Estimated time of arrival (ETA)|
|10-79||Bomb threat or Notify Coroner|
|10-80||Bomb has exploded|
|10-83||Work school crossing at|
|10-84||If meeting _____, advise ETA|
|10-85||Delay due to (reason)|
|10-86||Police officer on duty|
|10-88||Look up persons phone number|
|10-90||Bank alarm going off at|
|10-91||Picking up a prisoner|
|10-92||Improperly parked vehicle|
|10-95||Suspect in custody|
|10-96||Psych patient / psychotic behavior|
|10-97||Scene arrived, Check signal|
|10-98||Prison or jail break|
|10-99||Wanted stolen record|
The following is a list of Police Codes used by the Association of Police Communications Officers (ABCO)
|10-4||Affirmative or OK|
|10-7||Out of service|
|10-11||On duty (employee number)|
|10-12||Stand by / stop|
|10-14||Message / Information|
|10-16||Reply to message|
|10-21||Call _______ by phone|
|10-23||Arrive at scene|
|10-25||Report to meet ______|
|10-26||Estimated time of arrival (ETA)|
|10-27||License / Permit information|
|10-30||Danger / caution|
|10-32||______ Units needed|
|10-33||Need immediate assistance|
|10-40||Fight in progress|
|10-41||Beginning tour of duty|
|10-42||Ending tour of duty|
|10-47||Complete assignment quickly|
|10-48||Detaining suspect, expedite|
|10-50||Vehicle fire / F-Fire, PI-Personal injury, PD-Property damage|
|F,PI,PD||F-Fire, PI-Personal injury, PD-Property damage|
|10-54||Hit and run accident|
|F,PI,PD||F-Fire, PI-Personal injury, PD-Property damage|
|10-57||Request BT Operator|
|10-61||Stopping suspicious vehicle|
|10-62||B and E in progress|
|10-63||Prepare to receive assignment|
|10-64||Crime in progress|
|10-66||Notify Medical Examiner|
|10-67||Report of death|
|10-68||Livestock in roadway|
|10-69||Advise telephone number|
|10-70||Improper parked vehicle|
|10-71||Improper use of radio|
|10-72||Prisoner in custody|
|10-74||Prison / jail break|
|10-75||Wanted or stolen|
|10-77||Direct traffic at fire scene|
|10-81||Nature of fire|
|10-82||Fire in progress|
|10-84||No smoke visible|
|10-85||Respond without blue lights / sirens|
What's a 187 police code?
187 in police code is slang for homicide or murder. The numbers represent the California penal codes for homicide.
What is ADW in Police Code?
ADW in Police Code means Assault with a Dangerous or Deadly Weapon. You may hear this a lot if you are listening to a city police department on the police scanner.
What is a 10-46 Police Radio Code mean?
The general purpose of a 10 46 Police Radio Code is:
- Assist Motorist
- Motorist is in need of assistance
What is a 10-47 Police Radio Code mean?
The general purpose of a 10 47 Police Radio Code is:
- Emergency road repair at _______.
What is a 10-54 Police Radio Code mean?
The general purpose of a 10 54 Police Radio Code can mean
- Possible Dead Body
- Possible Fatality
- Hit and Run Accident
What is a 10-72 Police Code?
The general purpose code for 10-72 is Report Progress on Fire. The APCO code for 10-72 is Prisoner in Custody.
What does 10-78 I got your 6 mean?
When you hear 10-78 I got your 6 it means that 10-78 is a call for assistance and 6 means or signifies that "I got your back." The officer is responding to the call for assistance and is telling the officer in trouble that he or she has their back.
I got your 6 in police jargon
The police jargon term "6" Comes from the old pilot system in which directions correspond to hours on the clock, where 12 o'clock is forward and 6 o'clock is behind.
When they say I have your six (6) it means I have your back.
Do cops use the phonetic alphabet?
Yes, Police Officers use the phonetic alphabet in order to clarify letters when the transmit information. This makes it easier on the receiver of the information to understand letters like I and Y or M and N.
|I||India||IN dee ah|
|J||Juliet||JEW lee ET|
|N||November||no VEM ber|
|R||Romeo||ROW me oh|
|S||Sierra||see AIR ah|
|U||Uniform||YOU neh form|
Acronyms Used by Cops
The following are is a lost of commonly used acronyms used in police work. Unlike police codes many agencies consider these acronyms universally used amongst them and their neighboring police departments and state agencies.
|ADA||Assistant District Attorney|
|ADW||Assault with a dangerous or deadly weapon|
|AKA||Also Known As|
|ATF||Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms|
|B & E||Break and Entering|
|BOLO||Be on the lookout for|
|BOP||Board of Probation|
|CDL||Commercial Drivers License|
|CHP||California Highway Patrol|
|DEA||Drug Enforcement Agency|
|DOA||Dead On Arrival|
|DOC||Department of Correction|
|DMV||Department of Motor Vehicles|
|DEA||Drug Enforcement Administration|
|DOB||Date of Birth|
|DUI||Driving Under the Influence|
|DWI||Driving While Intoxicated|
|ETA||Estimated Time of Arrival|
|EOW||End of Watch|
|FBI||Federal Bureau of Investigation|
|FTA||Failure to Appear|
|GTA||Grand Theft Auto|
|OIS||Officer Involved Shooting|
|POI||Party of Interest|
|RHD||Robbery Homicide Division|
|SRT||Special Response Team|
|SWAT||Special Weapons and Tactics|
|VIN||Vehicle Identification Number|
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