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Emergency Communications

Wireless RERC Makes EAS Accessibility Standards Recommendations

August 2014 – The Wireless RERC and Georgia Tech’s Center for Advanced Communications Policy (CACP) submitted comments to the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking In the Matter of Review of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) [EB Docket No. 04-296]. As a result of the nationwide EAS test revealing issues with text crawls, the FCC requested public comments about the accessibility of EAS' visual and audio presentation of text.

All Wireless Providers Required to Support Text-to-911

August 2014 - The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a press release August 8, 2014 establishing compliance deadlines for text-to-911 services. The adopted rules complement previous voluntary commitments made by the top four wireless carriers to support text-to-911 by May 2014. In addition to AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-mobile, certain IP-based text applications and the remaining wireless carriers are expected to support text-to-911 by the end of the year.

House Passes Social Media Emergency Response Bill

July 2014 – With the continuous growth of emergency response on social media, the House passed the Social Media Working Group Act of 2014 [HR 4263] allowing the Department of Homeland Security to establish social media use standards in the event of terrorist attacks. The bill encourages the federal government to communicate with citizens by establishing a social media working group to report emergency preparedness support technologies, social media response activity, and social media use recommendations to DHS and Congress. Bill sponsor, Rep.

FCC Sets Comment Deadlines for EAS Refresh

July 2014 – The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the Matter of Review of the Emergency Alert System [EB Docket No.

Updated: 12 Considerations for Accessible Emergency Communications

July 2014 – The Wireless RERC recently updated their consideration guide to help emergency response and preparedness communities plan for individuals with access and functional needs. The document highlights technology, policy, training and education concerns for making emergency communications more accessible. Some considerations include:


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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.