Emergency Communications: The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and All-Hazard Warnings
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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The Emergency Alert System EAS is built on a structure conceived in the 1950s when over-the-air broadcasting was the best-available technology for widely disseminating emergency alerts. It is one of several federally managed warning systems. The Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA jointly administers EAS with the Federal Communications Commission FCC, in cooperation with the National Weather Service NWS, an organization within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA. The NOAANWS weather radio system has been upgraded to an all-hazard warning capability. Measures to improve the NOAA network and the broader-based EAS are underway or are being tested. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act P.L. 108-458 addressed the possibility of using advanced telecommunications and Internet technologies for emergency notification by requiring the Department of Homeland Security DHS to implement pilot projects. On June 26, 2006, President George W. Bush issued an executive order stating that U.S. policy is to have an effective, reliable, integrated, flexible, and comprehensive system to alert and warn the American people.
- Civil Defense