Random Noise: September 2016

September 9, 2016
Dennis Thompson


A reminder that the Annual SBE66 picnic/BBQ/Potluck is just a day away. I hope you’ll be able to attend this event on Saturday September 17th at the Meadow Lakes picnic area. Friends and family members are welcome to this end-of-summer event and the weather is predicted to be perfect, so why not make the short drive. Information and directions to the event are available HERE and in this Newsletter.

The EAS Local Emergency Communications Committee (LECC) reconvened at the National Weather Service in Hanford on August 25th to re-revise the Emergency Alert System (EAS) Communications Operations Orders (COO) for the San Joaquin Valley Local Area.

SJV EAS Committee (L-R) Ken Holden, Bret Covish, Mike Aurand, David Whitehead, Kevin Lynott

SJV EAS Committee (L-R) Ken Holden, Bret Covish, Mike Aurand, David Whitehead, Kevin Lynott

The last approved revision was made in April of 2010 to add the California Highway Patrol Law Enforcement Warning into the EAS activation policy as well as changes to the EAS codes.  The current update, when approved, addresses the change of the LP1 station back to KMJ-AM (from the Hanford National Weather Service (NWS) proposal). The NWS will become the LP2 station. The update also adds the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) to the must carry event codes, moves the Child Abduction Emergency (CAE) to a may carry and addresses outdated or incorrect names and phone numbers and minor changes to text.  The updated COO is being sent to the State Emergency Communications Committee (SECC) for approval and distribution to stations, cable entities, and appropriate government offices.

In light of the current changes, a topic for upcoming meetings should definitely include best practices for monitoring the NWS. What equipment/ antennas are working for monitoring the National Weather Service at your facility?

In other things EAS related. . .This information from Mark A. Lucero, CISSP Chief, IPAWS Engineering
FEMA National Continuity Programs, “The IPAWS RWT sent Monday 9/12/16 was digitally signed with an expired digital certificate.  If your EAS receiver is set to ‘check signature’ then it would have rejected the RWT.” If you didn’t receive the IPAWS alert Mr. Lucero states, “you would not see alerts on the EAS feed signed with with expired digital certificates.”

Check your logs. You may have noticed a log only FEMA RWT with a 000000 on Wednesday 9/14/16 at 11:00 AM. This is an opportunity to see how your receiver responds to an “All US” test and to check your filters to see if your machine recognizes 000000, and what it does.

The 2016 National EAS Test is still scheduled for September 28, 2016 at 2:20 PM EDT. You should have filed Form One on the ETRS (the deadline was August 26, 2016). Some stations and consultants are receiving notifications from the FCC that they have not filed Form One on the ETRS, even if they did. If you have a problem with Form One, or need to refile, here is a handy LINK.

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