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Hatzolah radio

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Rabbi Yoel Lieberman

Nisan 3, 5782
Question
You refer to radio as Kli shemelachto be’eassour Can a member move it shlo letzorach. For example, if it is on a table can he move it around? Or pick it up to listen when call not relevant to him? Ty
Answer
ב"ה Shalom A radio or a phone are indeed referred to as" kli shemelachto l'issur ", which mean a utensil which is used for an act forbidden on Shabbat. " kli shemelachto l'issur " can be moved on Shabbat for two purposes. 1. l'tzorech Gufo", meaning for itself. For example, one may move a hammer on Shabbat for the sake of cracking nuts, if a nut-cracker is unavailable. In the case of a radio, it can be used for a paper weight for example, if a non-muktzeh item is unavailable. 2. "L'zorech Mikomo", meaning the space where the muktzeh item is sitting, is needed. So if the radio is on the table and now the table has to be set for a Shabbat meal, the radio can be moved. (Shemirat Shabbat K'hilchata 2010 Hebrew Edition pg. 296, Chapter 20:8-9) The radio should not be moved or lifted if the call is not relevant to the medic. However, I was told by an ambulance driver that different rescue agencies vary in the way the calls get sent out. At times, the medic must take all calls since he is not sure which one is meant for him. Sometimes, the calls are sent out only to medics closest to the vicinity of the incident. Therefore, to the bystander who is not familiar with things looking at the radio may seem unnecessary, but this may not be the case. All the best
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