FDNY Bell Signals

Signals in effect when the bell system was placed out of service on October 6, 1983:

Signal

2
2-1-Box#
2-2
2-2-2
2-2-2-1
2-3
2-9
3-BOX#-TERM#

3-3
4
4-4
4-4-4
4-4-4-2-1
4-4-4-4
5
5-5
5-7
5-5-5-5
6
6-5
6-5-2
6-6

6-6-6-6
6-6-6-6-6
7
7-5

7-7

8
8-8

 

 

Signal

9


9-2
9-9

10
11
13

13-1-13
13-2-13
13-652-2
13-652-3
13-652-4
13-652-5
13-652-6
14
15
16
17
18
19
20

 

Meaning

Time Signal (1200)
Adaptive response
Second Alarm
Out of Service
Adaptive Response Ended
Acknowledgement
Marine Company not required
(A) Special Building

Box # and Terminal #
(B) Repeat Signal
Third Alarm

Battalion Chief
Fourth Alarm
In Service
Adaptive Response started
Return to regular working system
Engine Company
Fifth Alarm
Only engine & ladder to respond
Flag to half-staff
Marine Company
Use telephone
Monitor Radio
(A) Preliminary signal for Man/Bnx
(B) Simultaneous call for Man/Bnx
(C) Notification Signal for Man/Bnx
Start 24 hours on/off system
Start continuous duty
Ladder company
(A) Call for full first alarm assignment
(B) All Hands or 2 & 2 at work if 2 & 2 assigned
(A) Preliminary signal for Brooklyn
(B) Simultaneous call for Brooklyn
(C) Notification signal for Brooklyn
Squad Company
(A) Preliminary signal for Staten Island
(B) Simultaneous call for Staten Island
(C) Notification signal for Staten Island

Meaning

Preliminary for special units
(A) Ambulance: Term 1-3
(B) Searchlights: Term 21-23
(C) Field Comm: Term 31
(D) Mask Svc Unit: Term 41
——Tender: Term 52
——Satellite 1: Term 53

—–Satellite 2: Term 54
——Satellite 3: Term 55
(F) Thawing app: Term 61-66
(G) Comm/News Svc: Term 71
(H) Foam Unit: Term 81
(I) Combination fire companies: Term 121-131-151
Malicious false alarm

(A) Preliminary signal for Queens
(B) Simultaneous call for Queens
(C) Notification signal for Queens
Rescue Company
Telegraph Test
(A) Apparatus out of service in quarters or
while responding
(B) Apparatus out of service during inspections or
similar activities
(C) Apparatus out of service to extinguish a fire whlie
responding or returning and additional help needed

Attack Warning
Radiation Warning
Manhattan radio inoperative
Brooklyn radion inoperative
Queens radio inoperative
Bronx & SI radio inoperative
City Wide radio inoperative
Relocation of battalion chief
Relocation of engine company
Relocation of marine company
relocation of ladder company
Return all units except engine and ladder required
Return all units except unit required
Proceed to box location at reduced speed

NOTE: 6-5-2 was often written as 65-2, but was transmitted as 6-5-2 or 6-5–2 with a long pause

 

This material is from “Fire Department of New York –an Operational
Reference,” and is used with permission of the author. The material
may not be further reproduced.

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