Mississippi tests wireless emergency alert messaging system

The state of Mississippi has successfully completed a test of its emergency alert network, based on wireless messaging technology from Global Security Systems (GSS). Mississippi Public Broadcasting has partnered with the state's Office of Homeland Security to allow the use of its tower network as the backbone of the statewide alert system. U.S. Senator Trent Lott called it “the first of its kind in the country.”

A systems integrator, service provider and manufacturer of homeland security and natural disaster first alert systems, GSS said that during a test of the FEMA Digital Emergency Alert System (DEAS), originating from Virginia, the system demonstrated live interoperability by delivering EAS text messages via FM radio signals (through Mississippi Public Broadcasting and private FM networks) to the cell phones of test participants in Jackson.

For the test, GSS developed a single-point to multipoint messaging system for redundant distribution of emergency alert messages in the event that responders' radios and cell phones become clogged with traffic or ineffective because of heavy network use. The company uses a standard commercial FM receiver chip that can be inserted into pagers, smoke detectors, cell phones, PDAs and other portable devices.

For more information, visit www.gssnet.us/.