This past week, InsideRadio reported that Emergency Alert System warnings would become a lot harder to miss under a bill advancing in Congress. It would allow the government to put the alert on repeat while a threat remains pending.
This proposal, along with other EAS rule changes, came about following the erroneous missile alert in Hawaii earlier this year. Under the proposed Reliable Emergency Alert Distribution Improvement Act or “READI Act” (S.3238), the Federal Communications Commission would be given six months after the bill’s passage to determine how to implement the EAS repeats.
The bill stated that it would apply to any messages that have been issued by the President or administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Other proposals in the READI Act include elimination of the option that currently allows the public to opt-out of receiving certain federal EAS messages on their mobile devices. It would also establish a reporting system for false alerts like the one that occurred in Hawaii earlier this year so that the FCC can track when they occur and examine their causes.
The NAB, in a statement supporting the proposal, said the support any move that would improve the timeliness, accuracy and availability of emergency alerts when disaster strikes and that “Local radio and TV broadcasters play a vital role as ‘first informers’ in keeping communities safe, and we understand the importance of relevant and up-to-date information when lives are at risk.”
Read the complete InsideRadio article here.