SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – One Upstate police department is using grant funds to update equipment to have even better response times.

The Spartanburg Police Department said their in-car radios are used on every single call to communicate with each other, other agencies and dispatch, and it’s important they’re always up to date.

The fastest way for law enforcement to respond to calls is through these radios.  

“They’re really important, we use them daily. I mean every call that we get dispatched to comes out over the radio,” said Lieutenant Justin Colegrove.

Through the Justice Assistance Grant Program, the Spartanburg Police Department is purchasing new radios for their cars.

“What we want to be able to do is have one system where public safety, we can speak and communicate to people across the state,” said Major Art Littlejohn. “And so, these radios, which are called the 800’s, allow us to do that.”

The grant is around $46,000 and they are replacing 84 out of 247.

“When there’s an emergency situation that happens, we all come about, and so we’re all there, we have to have the means to all be able to communicate and share information,” said Littlejohn.

Officers have two radios: one in their cars and handhelds, but they need to have updated technology.

“You call 911, you want the officers to be able to get to you.  Officers are dispatched and they’re able to get there quicker based on that information,” said Littlejohn.

Littlejohn added after an officer gets the call, the communication continues with dispatch.

“Are there any updates, has anything changed, who are we looking for, what are the clothing descriptions?” he said.

Colegrove has been with the department for 19 years and has worked with radios that aren’t up to date.

“It makes a big difference, there was times with radios where you could have dead spots in different places in the city, buildings you go in,” he said.

He said as technology increases, it’s important they stay with it.

“Keep bettering ourselves to better serve the community. It makes a huge difference on our response times and everything kind of falls on how we are equipped,” said Colegrove.

“The police department is looking for your feedback on how they’re spending these grant funds. You can mail in your response or take an online survey.

Littlejohn said they need to have all the updated radios in the cars by July 1, 2027.