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EAS Changes Allow Governors to Push the Button

Expanding on our report a week ago on the FCC adoption of a proposal to strengthen EAS:

Expanding on our report a week ago on the FCC adoption of a proposal to strengthen EAS:

The order promotes development of “next generation” digital technologies and delivery systems, it said. Participants also now must transmit state and local alerts that are originated by state governors.

The commission is requiring EAS participants to accept messages using Common Alerting Protocol no later than 180 days after FEMA announces adoption of standards in each case. “The use of CAP will help to ensure the efficient and rapid transmission of EAS alerts to the American public in a variety of formats (including text, audio and video) and via different means (broadcast, cable, satellite, and other networks) and to promote the development of Next Generation EAS,” the FCC stated.

It said one result will be enhanced access to alerts and warnings for people with disabilities and non-English speakers.

“The Further Notice seeks comment on how best to deliver EAS alerts as well as broader emergency and public safety information to these groups, and commits to adoption of a final order within six months,” the commission stated. It left open the issues raised in a petition filed by several groups representing non-English speaking persons.

The FCC told its Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau to arrange meetings on providing emergency info to non-English speakers.

The Order “also requires terrestrial EAS participants to transmit state and locally targeted EAS alerts that are originated by governors or their designees.” And it asks for comment on whether participants should be required to deliver EAS alerts originated by local, county, tribal or other state governmental entities.