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Wireless RERC Comments on Accessible Emergency Communications

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November 19, 2015 - The Wireless RERC submitted ex parte comments to the Federal Communications Commission in open proceedings concerning the Emergency Alert System [Docket Nos. 15-94 and 04-296] and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) [Docket Nos. 15-91 and 07-287]. The document presents the background and results of research activities which were conducted to examine the effectiveness of EAS and WEA to provide alerts to people with disabilities.  Specifically, the Wireless RERC conducted comparative analyses of the awareness of EAS and WEA messages, the accessibility of the two systems, as well as the types of protective actions taken as a result of the emergency messages.  The survey research occurred between 2011 and 2014 and the results, analyses and recommendations were completed in 2015 and were submitted for consideration in the above-referenced rulemakings.  This research is provided to government entities to supply unbiased data and evaluation to help ensure that individuals with disabilities have equal access to critical lifesaving information through digitally-based warning systems.

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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 90RE5007-01-00. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or NIDILRR.