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#Radio100 Moment 6: Emergency Alert System (EAS) Launches (January 1, 1997)
January 1, 1997

Moment 6: Emergency Alert System (EAS) Launches

The Emergency Alert System (EAS) national warning system was approved by the FCC in November 1994, and it officially replaced its predecessor, the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS), on January 1, 1997. It is jointly coordinated by FEMA, the FCC and NOAA. Its regulations and standards are managed by the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau of the FCC. The system equires radio and TV broadcasters, cable TV, wireless cable systems, satellite and wireline operators to provide the president with capability to address the American people within 10 minutes during a national emergency. In practice, it is more commonly used to distribute information regarding imminent threats to public safety, such as severe weather situations (including flash floods and tornadoes), AMBER Alerts of child abductions and other civil emergencies.

November 2, 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the first commercial radio broadcast. To celebrate this special anniversary, we’re shining a spotlight on 100 key moments in radio's history.

We hope you’ll join us in celebrating your favorite radio memories throughout 2020. Use the hashtag #Radio100 across social media to share these moments with the world. Here’s to 100 wonderful years of radio, and to at least 100 more!

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