NAB helps broadcasters prepare for national EAS test

NAB is providing resources to assist broadcasters with the first-ever nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS), to be held on Nov. 9 at 2 p.m. EST.

The National EAS Test, conducted by the FCC and FEMA, will be a diagnostic exercise to determine the reliability and effectiveness of the system. All EAS participants, including every TV and radio station in the country, must participate. The test is designed to increase public awareness.

Participants will not be judged on a “pass-fail” basis regarding their performance in the test, but must report to the FCC certain results of the exercise within 45 days. Broadcasters will need to report on whether, and from whom, they received the EAS test message and whether they rebroadcast it to the public, among other information.

To assist broadcasters in meeting requirements of the test, NAB has created a simple checklist of relevant information for every phase of the National EAS Test. The checklist provides steps for broadcasters to ensure their equipment is ready for the exercise, and what actions are required of them during and after the test.

NAB has also teamed with the FCC and FEMA to distribute radio and television public service announcements (PSAs) to promote Americans’ awareness of the test. Television PSAs will be available via satellite feed on Oct. 14 at 11:30 a.m. Sample scripts will also be available to allow stations to tailor or produce their own PSAs.

NAB encourages broadcasters to begin airing the PSAs at least one week before the test, and with increasing frequency as Nov. 9 approaches.

For further information about the National EAS Test, NAB members may contact NAB’s Legal Department at 866-682-0276 or 202-429-5430.