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witf to participate in first nationwide test of emergency alert system

Written by witf.org | Nov 3, 2011 3:07 PM

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on TV and radio on Wednesday, November 9, at 2:00 p.m.

It will be heard on witf 89.5 and 93.3 in Chambersburg, as well as on witf TV

The national Emergency Alert System is an alert and warning system that can be activated by the president, if needed, to provide information to the American public during emergencies. NOAA's National Weather Service, governors and state and local emergency authorities also use parts of the system to issue more localized emergency alerts.

Similar to emergency alert system tests that are already conducted frequently on the local level, the nationwide test will involve television and radio stations across the United States, including Alaska, Hawaii, and the territories of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa.

Under the FCC's rules, radio and television broadcasters, cable operators, satellite digital audio radio service providers, direct broadcast satellite service providers and wireline video service providers are required to receive and transmit presidential EAS messages to the public. A national test will help federal partners and EAS participants determine the reliability of the system, as well as its effectiveness in notifying the public of emergencies and potential dangers both nationally and regionally. It will also provide the FCC and FEMA a chance to identify improvements that need to be made to build a modernized and fully accessible Emergency Alert System.

FEMA is encouraging the public to use this event as a reminder that everyone should establish an emergency preparedness kit and emergency plan for themselves, their families, communities, and businesses. Visit www.Ready.gov for more information about how to prepare for and stay informed about what to do in the event of an actual emergency.

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