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Feds Try Out Digital Emergency Alert System in DC

Feds Try Out Digital Emergency Alert System in DC

Federal emergency officials have launched the pilot of a Digital Emergency Alert System in the nation’s capital – a system they hope one day will provide a “digital backbone” that makes for better EAS nationally.
FEMA – which is now part of the Department of Homeland Security – said the six-month pilot is aimed at creating better public alert and warning during times of crisis. It uses local public TV digital television broadcasts.
The agency wants to deploy the system nationally; it said it is talking to radio and TV stations, cellphone providers and others about how to make that happen. The system supplements existing national EAS.
An office within FEMA is the government’s agent for the national-level EAS system. The pilot program also involves other Homeland Security officials and the Association of Public Television Stations.
Goals of the tests: to improve the government’s ability to provide alert and warning accessibility to the hearing and visually impaired, target warnings and improve reception by increasing the number of devices that can receive warnings.