Saturday, July 28, 2012

FCC Fines Alaska Man for Interfering with Air Traffic Using CB Radio

On July 17, the FCC announced that it had issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture and Order (NAL) in the amount of $12,500 to Glenn S. Yamada, of Kenai, Alaska. Yamada is accused of “apparently willfully and repeatedly violat[ing] Section 301 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Sections 95.409(a) and 95.411(a)(1) and (b) of the FCC Rules by operating his CB radio “without requisite Commission authorization.”

In January 2012, the FCC received a complaint regarding interference to an authorized user in the aeronautical band -- a safety of life service -- on 21.964 MHz. According to the FCC, the complaint “Concerned a male subject talking and interfering with the control and monitoring of air traffic over the North Atlantic.” The FCC’s High Frequency Direction Finding Center (HFDFC) monitored the frequency over the next few days, and on January 31, “observed a subject matching the details of the compliant transmitting on the frequency 21.965 MHz.” The HFDFC noted that the subject was using the call “1600 Alaska,” that the actual operating frequency was 27.025 (CB channel 6) and that the transmissions were coming from Kenai.

An agent from the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau in Anchorage used direction finding techniques to locate the source of the interference. He found the source to be coming from Yamada’s residence and found that the interfering signal to 21.964 MHz was determined to be on 21.965 MHz, which correlates to CB channel 6 on 27.025 MHz; apparently, faulty equipment on CB Channel 6 produced a spurious signal on frequency 21.965 MHz, the source of the interference to frequency 21.964 MHz. A review of the FCC’s Universal Licensing System revealed that Yamada had no individual license to operate a CB radio station.

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