FCC to Conduct Nationwide EAS Test August 7th


PS Docket No. 15-94

The Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (Bureau) of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) reminds all Emergency Alert System (EAS) Participants and the public that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in coordination with the FCC, will conduct a nationwide test of the EAS on August 7, 2019, with a back-up date of August 21, 2019.  The Bureau also reminds all EAS Participants to file Form Two in the EAS Test Reporting System (ETRS) at or before 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) on August 7, 2019, and to file ETRS Form Three on or before September 23, 2019.  Additional information, including instructional videos and answers to frequently asked questions about entering data into the ETRS forms, can be found at .

At 2:20 p.m. EDT on August 7, 2019, FEMA will conduct a live test of the EAS.  All EAS Participants are required to participate in this nationwide test.  The EAS message will only be disseminated using a hierarchical, broadcast-based distribution system, otherwise known as the “daisy chain.”  The test message will clearly state that the alert is only a test of the EAS.

This year’s over-the-air EAS test will only be transmitted in English and will not include full message text.

EAS Participants are reminded, however, that EAS alerts are required to be accessible to the entire public, including people with disabilities.  The visual message portion of an EAS alert, whether video crawl or block text, must be displayed: (1) at the top of the television screen or where it will not interfere with other visual messages; (2) in a manner (i.e., font size, color, contrast, location, and speed) that is readily readable and understandable, (3) in a manner that does not contain overlapping lines of EAS text or extend beyond the viewable display (except for video crawls that intentionally scroll on and off of the screen); and (4) in full at least once during any EAS message.  EAS Participants are also reminded that the audio portion of an EAS message must play in full at least once during any EAS message.  Each EAS Participant, whether broadcaster, cable provider or other, needs to ensure that its equipment—whether EAS equipment, character generator, or other—is prepared to deliver the alert in a manner consistent with these Commission rules.

EAS Participants are reminded to take steps, in coordination with their State Emergency Communication Committees, in preparation for this test.  This preparation would include upgrading EAS equipment software and firmware to the most recent version and ensuring that EAS equipment can receive and process the National Periodic Test code, the “six zeroes” national location code, and otherwise operate in compliance with the Commission’s rules.  EAS Participants are also reminded to review their State EAS Plans for monitoring assignments and to ensure that EAS equipment is accurately configured to monitor those sources.

For further information regarding the nationwide EAS test, contact Elizabeth Cuttner, Attorney Advisor, Policy and Licensing Division, Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, at (202) 418-2145 or elizabeth.cuttner@fcc.gov, or Maureen Bizhko, Attorney Advisor, Policy and Licensing Division, Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, at (202) 418-0011 or maureen.bizhko@fcc.gov.