What Does 10-6 Mean Police

What Does 10-6 Mean in Police Communication?

In the realm of police communication, officers often employ a unique system of codes and signals to relay information quickly and efficiently. One such code that may be heard over police radios or observed in police reports is “10-6.” This code holds significance within law enforcement agencies worldwide and serves as a means of clear and concise communication. In this article, we will explore the meaning of 10-6 in police communication, its origins, and its practical applications. Additionally, we will address frequently asked questions regarding this code.

Origin and Meaning of 10-6:

The police code 10-6 has its roots in the United States and is utilized by many law enforcement agencies across the country. The code is part of a system known as the “Ten Code,” which was developed in the early 1900s to provide efficient communication between officers.

10-6 is specifically assigned to a request for “Busy, Stand By.” When an officer radios in 10-6, it indicates that they are currently occupied with a task or situation and are unable to respond to other calls or requests for the time being. This code serves to inform dispatchers and other officers that the individual using it is temporarily unavailable for additional assignments.

Practical Applications of 10-6:

In the fast-paced world of law enforcement, officers often find themselves juggling multiple tasks simultaneously. Whether they are engaging in a traffic stop, handling an arrest, or conducting an investigation, their attention and focus may be entirely dedicated to the situation at hand. By using the code 10-6, officers can effectively communicate their temporary unavailability to dispatchers and colleagues, ensuring that resources are allocated appropriately and that everyone remains informed.

See also  What Is a 10 33 Police Code

Additionally, 10-6 can be employed during critical incidents or emergencies when an officer requires uninterrupted communication with dispatch or other team members. By indicating their status as busy, they can avoid unnecessary interruptions and maintain a clear line of communication.


Q: Are police codes universal, or do they differ between countries?

A: Police codes can vary between different countries and even within different regions of the same country. While some codes may be similar across jurisdictions, it is essential to familiarize oneself with the specific codes used in a particular area.

Q: Can civilians use police codes?

A: While police codes are primarily designed for law enforcement communication, some codes have become more widely known due to their portrayal in movies, television shows, and popular culture. However, it is important to note that using police codes without proper authorization or understanding can lead to confusion and potential legal consequences.

Q: Are police codes still relevant in the age of modern technology?

A: Despite the advancements in technology, police codes continue to play a vital role in law enforcement communication. These codes offer a concise and standardized method of conveying information quickly and efficiently, ensuring effective communication in high-pressure situations.

Q: Are police codes publicly available?

A: Although some police codes are publicly available, certain codes and their specific meanings may be restricted to law enforcement personnel to maintain operational security.

Q: Is 10-6 the only code that means “busy” in police communication?

A: No, there are various codes used in police communication to indicate that an officer is busy or occupied. Some examples include 10-7 (Out of Service), 10-8 (In Service), and 10-19 (Return to Station).

See also  When Court Probably Endorsed Perjury


In the intricate world of police communication, the code 10-6 holds significant importance. It signifies an officer’s temporary unavailability, allowing them to focus on their current task without unnecessary distractions. By understanding and utilizing these codes effectively, law enforcement agencies can maintain seamless communication, allocate resources efficiently, and ensure the safety and security of their communities.