June 27, 2011
TV Tech Check

All Things EAS

NAB has received a number of inquiries asking where to get official information and documentation about the Emergency Alerting System, CAP requirements and the EAS National Test. Below are a number of links to the FCC and FEMA websites that station engineers can use as resources to navigate the EAS landscape.

Federal Communications Commission

The FCC EAS main Web page can be found at this link. It contains background information on the EAS and links to other documents on the Commission's website.

On May 26, the FCC released a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that asks over 130 questions about how the Commission should modify its Part 11 rule to accommodate the implementation of CAP (see TechCheck from June 6, 2011). The NPRM is at this link.

Comments on the NPRM are due on July 20, 2011 and the reply comments are due on August 4. To file comments, go to the FCC's Electronic Comment Filing System. The Docket number is EB 04-296.


Information about FEMA's IPAWS project is on their website. The website contains information about the history of IPAWS and all its various related programs including the EAS.

As part of the implementation of CAP, FEMA requires the manufacturers of CAP compliant encoders/decoders to submit their products to the Conformity Assessment Program. This program evaluates a vendor's products for adherence to the IPAWS CAP Profile for alert message creation and dissemination. Products that conform have a Supplier's Declaration of Conformity (SDoC) posted to the FEMA Responders Knowledge Base (RKB) website. To find the list of products that have completed the program do the following:

1. Go to FEMA Responders Knowledge website.
2. On the grey bar at the top of the page, hover over "Other Content", click certifications and declarations.
3. Put "IPAWS" in the search window.
4. Click the new search button.

The current list will appear in the search results window.

FEMA also maintains a blog where it posts and seeks feedback on EAS related topics. This "open dialog on the EAS" is located on their "Ideascale" Web page.

National Test

Both the FCC and FEMA maintain on-line resources containing information about the upcoming National EAS Test. This is the FCC's page. FEMA's National Test website is also accessible from their main IPAWS page.


Recently, there have been two on-line dialogs regarding the EAS, the NPRM and the National Tests. On June 9, 2011 FEMA held two Virtual Roundtable discussions. The audio recordings from these sessions are available at the links below (caution: these are direct links to very large files).

Also, on June 16, 2011 the National Alliance of State Broadcasters Associations (NASBA) together with NAB and the SBE held a virtual Town Hall Discussion focusing on the NPRM and the National test. The Town Hall is archived on the NASBA/NAB EAS Alert website.

The June 27, 2011 TV TechCheck is also available in an Adobe Acrobat file. Please click here to read the Adobe Acrobat version of Radio TechCheck.


TV TechCheck
will not be published on July 4, but will return
July 11, 2011.