Radio Communications Sites
- Equipment Shelter/Building with heat and cooling
- Antenna Structure (wood pole or metal tower)
- Backup Power Generator
- Security Fence
During the summer the facilities should be fire hardened to withstand wildfire, backup power generators for when wildfire or falling trees cause power outages and cooling capacity for climate control to maintain reasonable operating temperatures.
Site improvements have been made and more site improvements are required to ensure emergency radio communications are operational during daily operations and remain operational during disaster events.
Two examples of the improvements that have been made can be found at Pitcher Mountain and McClure Mountain.
Pitcher Mountain Site Improvements
In 2016 the Pitcher Mountain site was a cinder block building with exposed wood rafters, no generator, fire fuels touching the building.
In 2017 Okanogan County used grant funds to replace the above cinder block building with a concrete building, metal tower and backup power generator to maintain operations during a power failure (circled in red). Two buildings not owned by Okanogan County, that were not concrete structures, were destroyed in the 2020 Spring Coulee wildfire.
McClure Mountain Site Improvements
The McClure Mountain facility is key to Methow Valley agencies. The site was plagued by a lack of climate control, leaky roof and electronic noise from decades of old equipment not being properly maintained nor removed once no longer in use.
In 2016 Okanogan County was able to use grant funds at McClure Mountain to install a fire hardened concrete shelter, re-use the generator and replace the wood pole with a metal tower to establish a secure facility to house and operate the emergency radio communications system.