The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is a national warning system in the United States put into place in January 1, 1997, superseding the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS) and the CONELRAD System.
The FEMA National Radio System (FNARS) "Provides Primary Entry Point service to the Emergency Alert System," acts as an emergency presidential link into the EAS, and is capable of phone patches. The Federal Communications System EAS TV Handbook - 2007 does not include any sort of visual element. EnlargeA Gorman-Redlich rack mounted CAP-to-EAS converter which translates CAP formatted alerts into EAS headers.The message ends with three bursts of the AFSK "EOM", or End of Message, which is the text NNNN, preceded each time by the binary 10101011 calibration. Stations are required by federal law to keep logs of all received required monthly test, required weekly test, emergency action notification, and emergency action termination messages. In 2004, the FCC issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comment on whether EAS in its present form is the most effective mechanism for warning the American public of an emergency and, if not, on how EAS can be improved, such as mandatory text messages to cellphones, regardless of subscription. On February 3, 2011, the FCC announced plans and procedures for national EAS tests, which will involve all television and radio stations connected to the EAS system, as well as all cable and satellite services in the United States.
See also: NAVTEX and Desktop alertEAS is designed to be useful for the entire public, not just those with SAME-capable equipment.
The ability to narrow messages down so that only the actual area in danger is alerted is extremely helpful in preventing false warnings, which was previously a major tune-out factor. The United States Military has recently employed emergency notification technologies at The United States Academy at West Point, The United States Air Force Academy and numerous military installations to assist in critical and mass notification to base personnel using alert software designed by Desktop Alert.
Currently under development is new infrastructure called the Digital Emergency Alert System. On June 26, 2007, the EAS in Illinois was activated at 7:35AM CDT and issued an Emergency Action Notification Message for the United States. On October 19, 2008 KWVE-FM of San Clemente, California was scheduled to conduct a Required Weekly Test; however, it conducted a Required Monthly Test by mistake, causing all stations and cable systems in the immediate area to relay the test.
On May 20, 2010, NOAA All-Hazards radios in the Hermiston, Oregon area, near the Umatilla Chemical Depot, were activated with an EAS alert shortly after 5PM. In the video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, during a Russian invasion of the United States, one of the loading screen videos is simply the Emergency Alert System.


In the 2009 science fiction film "Knowing", when "Diana" pulls in at the gas station and goes to the clerk for gasoline, the television in the background is displaying a 24 hour news broadcast, when suddenly the screen changes with both the "Emergency Alert System" alert tones and an alert message stating, "This is an Emergency Broadcast Transmission!" "This is not a test!" The message repeats again and you see a portrayal of a fictionalized presidential cabinet alerting the public of the impending solar flares.
On the television feeds at ABC News’ headquarters in New York City, CNN ran a preview graphic saying, “Soon: Emergency Test Alert,” but the actual test never ran. The Federal Emergency Management Agency released a statement saying data from the test was being collected.
EAS has become part of IPAWS - the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System, a program of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
It contains information about who originated the alert (the President, state or local authorities, the National Weather Service, or the broadcaster), a short, general description of the event (tornado, flood, severe thunderstorm), the areas affected (up to 32 counties or states), the expected duration of the event (in minutes), the date and time it was issued (in UTC), and an identification of the originating station. The tone is About this sound 1050 Hz (help·info) on a NOAA Weather Radio station, while on commercial broadcast stations, it consists of a "two tone" combination of 853 Hz and 960 Hz sine waves and is the same attention signal used by the older Emergency Broadcast System. Stations traditionally have been allowed to opt out of relaying other alerts such as severe weather, and child abduction emergencies (AMBER Alerts) if they so choose. The required weekly test (RWT) consists, at a minimum, of the header and the end-of-message SAME bursts.
No testing has to be done at all during a calendar week in which all parts of the EAS (header burst, attention signal, audio message, and end of message burst) have been legitimately activated. At first, almost all but three of the events (civil emergency message, immediate evacuation, and emergency action notification (national emergency)) were weather-related (such as a tornado warning). As noted above, rules implemented by the FCC on July 12, 2007 provisionally endorse replacing the SAME protocol with CAP and allow governors to compel universal activation of the system within their own states. This system would allow the transmission of emergency alerts directly to citizens and responders. Officials at the Office of Emergency Management announced that the activation and broadcast of the Emergency Alert System was in error due to possibly the wrong button being pressed.
In addition, the operator aborted the test midway through, leading the station to fail to broadcast the SAME EOM burst to end the test, causing all area outlets to broadcast KWVE-FM's programming until those stations took their equipment offline.[17] On September 15, 2009, the Federal Communications Commission fined its licensee, Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, $5000 for the botched EAS test.
A message scrolls across the screen giving evacuation instructions for residents of Prince George's County.[22] Strangely, the scrolling message says "EMERGENCY BROADCAST SYSTEM" when the tone is actually the EAS tone.


ET the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Communications Commission held its first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System.
The "two tone" system is no longer required as of 1998 and is to be used only for audio alerts before EAS messages.[6] Like the EBS, the attention signal is followed by a voice message describing the details of the alert.
A color coded "crawl" system is often used where the color signifies the priority of the message. Under new rules published on July 12, 2007, the FCC intends to require all stations to relay state and local alerts that are approved by their states' governors (pending approval of the CAP standard).
Though a RWT does not need an audio or graphic message announcing the test, many stations will provide them as a courtesy to the public. Since then, several classes of non-weather emergencies have been added, including, in most states, the AMBER Alert System for child abduction emergencies. These alerts would be sent to users of computers, mobile phones, pagers, and other devices. Further investigation by the primary station transmitting the commercial revealed that the spot had been produced using an audio clip of an actual EAS header which had been modified to lower the header's tone and presumably prevent it from triggering false positive alert reactions in EAS equipment. Some people never saw an alert, others said the audio was distorted and there were even claims that Lady Gaga’s song “Paparazzi” was playing instead of the correct audio. These radios come pre-tuned to a station in each area that has agreed to provide this service to local emergency management officials and agencies, often with a direct link back to the plant's safety system or control room for instant activation should an evacuation or other emergency arise.
With the immediate live media coverage, the need for an EAS warning was lessened." 34 PEP stations were kept on high alert for use if the President had decided to order an Emergency Action Notification. Beyond that, the current Emergency Alert System signal is an audio message only—which pre-empts all programming—so that viewers who were watching color images of the trade center on Sept.
Received monthly tests must be re-transmitted within 60 minutes from receipt.[6] Additionally, an RMT should not be scheduled or conducted during an event of great importance such as a pre-announced Presidential speech, coverage of a national election or a major sporting event such as the Olympic Games, the Super Bowl or the World Series as mentioned in individual EAS state plans.



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