National Test of the Emergency Alert System set for Sept. 27posted on 7.17.2017
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has informed the Federal Communications Commission of its intent to conduct a 2017 national test of the Emergency Alert System on Wednesday, Sept. 27, with Oct. 4 set as a “rain date”.
In the 2016 national test of EAS, 88 percent of EAS participants across the country were able to receive and relay the test message. FEMA said a majority of the stations reported a “clean, clear, and easily understandable audio message.” The agency concluded that use of the National Periodic Test EAS event code allowed the test to occur without alarming the public and “elevated public awareness, providing important information on EAS within the landscape of public alert and warning.” Stations can read more in the 2016 IPAWS EAS National Test Report.
The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau also issued its own report, September 28, 2016 Nationwide EAS Test.
In anticipation of a 2017 national EAS test, the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau in late June released instructions on registering for access to the 2017 EAS Test Reporting System (ETRS). The Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau is expected to announce more ETRS details later this month.
ETRS was first used in 2016 before and after the second national test of EAS. Unlike the voluntary test reporting after the first national test of EAS in 2011, ETRS is mandatory.
Attorneys with TAB Associate Member law firm Fletcher Heald and Hildreth say the FCC “has mandated that filers using the 2017 ETRS must use a single account for filing their EAS reporting data based on multiple FCC Registration Numbers (FRNs).” It’s meant to be a streamlining move.
Fletcher Heald and Hildreth’s Dan Kirkpatrick and Keenan Adamchak say EAS participants such as broadcast stations “must ensure that they create an FCC Username within the FCC’s updated Commission Registration System (CORES), and associate all FRNs assigned to the participant and its reporting subsidiaries to its FCC Username.”
They recommend stations register in CORES as soon as possible in order to ensure that they will be able to complete and file their required 2017 ETRS filings. You can read the Fletcher Heald and Hildreth update on using CORES and ETRS for the 2017 national EAS test here.
Questions? Contact TAB's Michael Schneider or call (512) 322-9944.
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