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Timm: What the FCC Changed, Eliminated in EAS Rules

EATs, intermediary devices discussed

In Part 3 of his deep-dive into the recent EAS decision, Touchstone Consulting Group’s Gary Timm, a former broadcast engineer with experience in alerting, covered what the FCC left the same, updated an often-used acronym and discussed four rules that the commission eliminated. Timm has been analyzing the FCC’s 5th Report & Order on EAS.

Timm pointed out that aside from the elimination of the Governor-originated CAP alert, the agency also eliminated the Emergency Action Termination code as part of the presidential alerting process. The agency noted that the EAT was a holdover from when EAS station manual operation was the norm and does not translate well for automated operation, Timm states on the Alerts, Warnings & Response to Emergencies blog.

The FCC also acknowledged that the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) publication currently used to describe EAS Location Code numbering has been replaced by an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) publication. That means the EAS location “FIPS Code” is now “ANSI Code.”

Earlier, in Part 2 of his analysis, Timm discussed what the FCC calls “intermediary devices,” which convert CAP messages to legacy EAS messages and then routed those messages to an existing non-CAP legacy EAS unit for airing. The commission clarified that if the intermediary device outputs the messages in legacy EAS protocol, then the device needs to be certified.