Your FRS/GMRS radios are fine for the purpose you have in mind, in an emergency there will likely be a boatload of them on the air and the potential to form neighborhood nets and segregate traffic by channel is a plus.
But if you’re looking for SECURE digital mode voice communications that would provide similar secure comms to military SINGCARS take a look at: http://www.trisquare.us/
These are 900 mhz frequency hopping spread spectrum radios, meaning their are virtually impervious to eavesdropping and jamming. These radios would serve a different - but vital - role in emergency comms, because they would be immune to the congestion and interference that may easily render FRS/GMRS unusable. Plus, you might want a private and secure channel that could not be monitored by anyone else.
The range of these digital radios is no greater than any other radio of similar power. In fact, Trisquared’s “truth about range” is a good no BS explanation. About $70 a pair.
According to the manual, outdoors over flat terrain the TSX300s effective range was about one and a half miles.
Throw in buildings, RF, hills etc.....well..
I guess it is OK to share this on freerepublic, we are all trustworthy patriots that can keep our security concerns secret, and only among ourselves.
I developed a code that I think is unbreakable, I even tried it with a special operations radio operator and he could only roll his eyes when he was totally baffled by it’s complexity.
To use it, the first consonant (or consonant cluster) is moved to the end of the word and an ay is affixed (for example, computer yields omputercay or truancy yields uancytray). The objective is to conceal the meaning of the words from others not familiar with the rules.
With practice, skilled operators can use it to quickly share information, safe from the prying ears of the NSA, and others.