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July 09, 2013  |   Comments (0)   |   Post a comment

PA systems help drivers communicate safely

Whether directing students to cross the street safely in front of the bus or providing instructions during an emergency, these systems are vital to helping drivers communicate effectively. Suppliers meet these needs with systems as simple as speakers and a microphone or as elaborate as speakers integrated with emergency switches and ambient noise systems.

by Nicole Schlosser


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REI offers a widevariety of PA systems,ranging from its basic Panel Mount models to its 760928 model (pictured), with features such as an external PA, as well as the ability to immediately switch from radio mode to PA mode.
<p>REI offers a wide<br />variety of PA systems,<br />ranging from its basic Panel Mount models to its 760928 model (pictured), with features such as an external PA, as well as the ability to immediately switch from radio mode to PA mode.</p>

REI provides customizable systems
With many states requiring them, a PA system on the inside of a school bus is almost standard operating procedure, Chris Shigley, national sales manager for REI, says. REI meets this need with a wide range of custom PA systems from its basic Panel Mount PA system to its 760928, with features such as wireless microphones and external PAs, as well as the ability to immediately switch from radio mode to PA mode.

Some of REI’s PA systems include a squelch mechanism that sends a loud, high-pitched, screeching noise through the speaker and ambient noise systems that dynamically adjust the sound in specific areas of the vehicle.

“That’s the uniqueness of REI: our scalability,” Shigley says. “Whether you want just one simple independent PA that’s not even a radio, or one that’s integrated with a radio and wireless headsets, we have a solution for you. We can custom-configure a system [with] the simple internal PA or an AM/FM/CD/SD/USB port wireless headset internal/external PA system.”

Custom Radio Corp.’s new PA system product, the CSS-1000E Din Mount, comes equipped with a PA-on-demand feature, a controller mechanism that overrides other functions, such as the radio, in case of an emergency.
<p>Custom Radio Corp.’s new PA system product, the CSS-1000E Din Mount, comes equipped with a PA-on-demand feature, a controller mechanism that overrides other functions, such as the radio, in case of an emergency.</p>

Custom Radio offers PA-on-demand
A wide variety can also be found among Custom Radio Corp.’s PA systems. In addition to basic radios with PAs built in, Custom Radio’s products also come equipped with emergency switches. As with REI’s systems, some include a squelching mechanism to get the attention of students, for example, if there is disorder on the bus, and a PA-on-demand feature, a controller mechanism that overrides other functions, such as the radio, in case of an emergency.

For example, Custom Radio Corp.’s new PA system product, the CSS-1000E Din Mount, provides all these capabilities, as well as three microphone inputs.  

While some of Custom Radio’s systems come with all the bells and whistles, such as SB and USB ports and capabilities for controlling audio, and external microphones for tour buses, Custom Radio can also simplify its radios for easy plug-and-play use. Each radio comes with a PA built into it. The CSS 1008 Din-Mount PA system is the most popular because it is strictly the PA, Eric Storey, bus sales, Custom Radio Corp., says.

“It eliminates all kinds of driver distractions. You don’t have to worry about messing with the radio.”

Increasingly, school bus applications of internal PA systems include drivers using microphones to give school tours and coaches to provide game strategies on the way to athletic events, Storey adds. Some of Custom Radio’s PAs can be used to narrate while watching game film by placing a microphone near the front seats,  preventing the coach from having to cross into the restricted area near the driver.

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