Mass Highway Radio Question

Tue Mar 31 18:27:43 EDT 2009

Many of the ones, I have seen, have been mounted on Trailers
that would typically containt the flashing arrows or Traffic Signs.

They have Solar Panels and can be placed in the median or in-between the
ramps, such as the Rte-128/Rte-93 Clover ramps.

A typical annual location, that might already be in-place is Rte-90 at 
for the Boston Marathon.

Licenses in Massachusetts are

Bedford 1.6400
Brockton 1.6200
Leominster 1.6200
Natick 1.6300
Plymouth 1.6200
Sharon - 1.6300
Mass Highway - Temp 530 Khz
Mass Highway - Temp 1.7000

Mass Turnpike -  Auburn, Boston, E.Boston, Charlton,  Weston,  Westboro 530 

Mass Steamship - Falmouth 1.6100
Mass Steamship - Hyannis 1.6100

Massport - Taxi Pool 1.6500

State of New Hampshire 530 khz

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Aaron Read" <>
To: <>; <>
Sent: Monday, March 30, 2009 1:35 PM
Subject: RE: Mass Highway Radio Question

> Joe, usually...but not always...the TIS/HAR (Traveler's Info 
> System/Highway Advisory Radio) transmitters are physically mounted on the 
> highway sign announcing the presence of a TIS/HAR transmitter.  Look for a 
> small metal box, usually about 1.5ft square, with a 6-10ft whip antenna 
> coming out of the top.  That's usually the transmitter.
> Sometimes there's two boxes (a transmitter and an ATU/Antenna Tuning Unit) 
> but usually it's just one.
> Often the quality of the audio does indeed stink; these units are IIRC 
> limited to 10 watts ERP and the antennas are, as you might imagine, pretty 
> low-efficiency.  There's often a decent ground connection via the steel 
> frame of the roadsign but that's only going to help so much.  Toss in that 
> the audio itself is usually fed via telephone, and not a good telephone 
> (sometimes it's a cellphone) and there you go - crappy audio.
> For a long time there was an amusing setup on Rt.128 southbound, between 
> the Rt.3 and MassPike exits (I don't remember exactly) where there was a 
> new TIS roadsign and right behind it was a totally wrecked TIS roadsign 
> that clearly still had a battered and beaten TIS transmitter attached to 
> it.  The new sign did not appear to have a new transmitter, so I had to 
> assume that the old one was still marginally functional.
> I don't think Massachusetts has any, but upstate NY and parts of VT have 
> LPFM licenses for TIS/HAR purposes.  Those are different kettles of fish 
> entirely as the antenna and transmitter are no different than any other 
> LPFM, and may or may not (probably not) be mounted on the TIS/HAR 
> announcement roadsign.
> -- 
> ----------------------------------------------------------------
> Aaron Read     |  Finger Lakes Public Radio
>   |  General Manager (WEOS & WHWS-LP)
> Geneva, NY 14456     | /
> I am wondering where the transmitters are for the highway radio
> channels? They are advertising it in Woburn along 128, but the signal
> is really scratchy.
> Thanks!
> Joe Brown 

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