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Washington Forum Will Explore Earthquake Considerations

TAB’s Adamson to participate in FCC event

What happens to our nation’s communications when an earthquake hits? What can America learn about communications implications of a quake from the experience of Japan?

These are among issues to be discussed in a forum put on by the FCC in May.

The Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission will host the Earthquake Communications Preparedness Forum in Washington, open to the public. Audio and video coverage also will be carried live via the Internet.

Broadcast considerations are part of the discussion, with Whit Adamson, president of the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters, among the participants. FCC technology, public safety and cybersecurity officials will be involved. Other organizations with speakers taking part include the embassy of Japan, the U.S. Geological Survey, FEMA, AT&T, Google and invited first responders.

“Catastrophic natural disasters such as hurricanes and earthquakes are large-scale emergencies that may affect substantial portions of the public and can have a significant impact on critical national infrastructure, including communications networks and services,” the commission stated.

The event will consider preparations that should be made in advance of an earthquake and “how to develop and implement national communications policies and emergency procedures to respond to an earthquake’s potential impact on communications networks and services.”