March 18, 2015 Regional IPAWS/EAS Test Announced
UPDATE:  Manufacture-specific instructions for adding the NPT code to existing EAS units for this test is available here.

On Wednesday, March 18, 2015, at approximately 2:30 P.M. Eastern DAYLIGHT Time, Michigan Broadcasters have been asked to participate in a regional test of IPAWS. IPAWS is the Integrated Public Alert Warning System run by FEMA. With the endorsement of the MAB Executive Committee, Michigan Broadcasters will join Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee in this important regional test of this new system, which is a secure pipeline for dissemination of emergency information to the public. All broadcasters with EAS equipment are required to have their EAS equipment connected to the IPAWS server via the Internet.

MAB Chairman Chris Warren writes:

"People in our listening and viewing areas depend on us for in-depth emergency information. Recent polls have shown that the first place people turn in an emergency is their local broadcasters, on-air and online; it is imperative that we are ready for all emergencies. The Executive committee of the MAB strongly believes that  every broadcaster should participate in the IPAWS Test."

Listeners and viewers will hear and see a test message very similar to the Required Monthly EAS Test. The test will originate from FEMA in Washington, D.C. This is a test of the broadcast system only; your local area emergency managers will not be involved.  Stations should log receipt and transmit of the IPAWS test.

It should be noted that this is a no-risk/no-fault test. Broadcasters will not be penalized for any negative test results.

Steps to prepare:

  1. Stations will need to verify that their EAS equipment is connected to the Internet and to the IPAWS server. 
     
  2. Stations will also need to enable the "NPT" event code (NPT = "National Periodic Test") in their EAS equipment. This is a simple one-time procedure that, once enabled, may remain enabled, as the FCC has pending rulemaking that will require regular testing of IPAWS. 
The MAB has manufacturer-specific instructions for enabling the NPT event code in the EAS section of our website as it is made available: http://michmab.com/EASFCC/EmergencyAlertSystemEAS

Please click this link to fill out a brief survey to confirm your participation in the March 18 test.


Posted on Thursday, February 5, 2015 (Archive on Thursday, March 19, 2015)
Posted by DanKelley  Contributed by