Society of Broadcast Engineers

This site is dedicated to the distribution of information
relevant to the operation and membership of the Madison,
Wisconsin Chapter of the Society of Broadcast Engineers.
Views expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the
official positions of the Society, its officers, or its
members. SBE Chapter 24, Inc. regrets, but is not liable
for, any omissions or errors.
SBE 24 NextGen EAS


Next Generation EAS Planning for Wisconsin

On September 30, 2010, FEMA formally adopted the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) for use in the Emergency Alert System (EAS). That action started a 180-day countdown clock for broadcasters and cable operators to install equipment capable of receiving CAP-formatted EAS alerts. On November 18, 2010, the FCC adopted a Waiver Order extending the deadline to September 30, 2011. On September 16, 2011, the FCC issued an EAS Fourth Report and Order, which extended the deadline an additional 9 months. The new deadline to have EAS CAP equipment installed is now June 30, 2012.

FEMA has established the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) as a means to disseminate FEMA-aggregated federal, state and local EAS CAP messages. IPAWS will be Internet-based, and the EAS CAP messages will be made available via an ATOM feed. The URL has not yet been announced, but all indications are that FEMA will be ready with this feed by September 30, 2011. Information on the URL will be distributed on the Wisconsin SBE email lists when available.

Acknowledging that the federal system will be Internet-based, the Wisconsin EAS Committee is exploring means to build an EAS CAP distribution system in Wisconsin that is wireless-based. The Committee continues to meet regularly and explorations are ongoing for an adequate system and the funding needed to build it. An EAS CAP network may or may not be completed in Wisconsin by the June 30, 2012 date, but state messages can still be routed through FEMA IPAWS for the time being until Wisconsin can gain the resources to build its own EAS CAP distribution system. Progress toward that end will be posted to this web page.

Gary Timm
Broadcast Chair
Wisconsin EAS Committee

Useful Links:

FCC EAS Fourth Report and Order


FCC EAS Website:

General information on CAP:

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