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New FCC EAS Handbook Available for Download; Deadline to File ETRS Form One is Feb. 28

The FCC this month published a new 2023 Emergency Alert System (EAS) Operating Handbook.

As noted in the FCC EAS rule Part 11.15, "A copy of the Handbook must be located at normal duty positions or EAS equipment locations when an operator is required to be on duty and be immediately available to staff responsible for authenticating messages and initiating actions."

The commission has not issued a deadline by which EAS participants must download the new Handbook, but TAB encourages member stations to do so now and discard the older version of the manual.

The new version of the Handbook is available here and is posted on the FCC’s ETRS webpage under “ETRS Resources and FAQs.

Stations should be aware that the updated Handbook includes numerous blanks for each station to fill in with its own unique Emergency Alert System practices and contacts.

Reminder - EAS Test Reporting System Form One Due by Feb. 28

Broadcasters have until Feb. 28 to submit Form One into the online EAS Test Reporting System (ETRS).

The FCC’s rules require EAS participants such as broadcast radio and television stations to annually review and update their identifying information for each station (e.g., transmitter location, EAS monitoring assignments, and make and model of EAS gear).

The FCC and FEMA utilize ETRS to assess the reliability and effectiveness of the nation’s alert and warning infrastructure.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) did not conduct a 2022 nationwide EAS test and has not yet scheduled a nationwide EAS test for 2023.

Questions? Contact TAB’s Michael Schneider or call (512) 322-9944.

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