There will be no National EAS Test in 2020
Citing the ongoing COVID-19 coronavirus public health emergency response, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has stated that they will not conduct a national test of the IPAWS system. In their statement, FEMA noted:
FEMA is moving the next national test of the system to 2021 out of consideration for the unusual circumstances and working conditions for those in the broadcast and cable industry. Although systems remain in place for rapid automatic transmission of the test message by broadcast and cable operators, the follow-on reporting activities associated with a national test place additional burdens on technical staff that are already quite busy maintaining as close to normal operation as possible.
FEMA is required by law to test IPAWS at least once every three years.
REC reminds all stations to assure that all stations properly receive the Required Weekly Tests (RWT) and if there are any discrepencies in their EAS logs, to troubleshoot the problem. Stations having issues receiving their monitoring assignments should contact their state EAS Coordinators for instructions.
LPFM stations are also reminded that they are only required to forward Required Monthly Test (RMT) messages to go over the air. LPFM stations are not required to originate any alerts or tests nor are they required to forward RWT messages.
For peer assistance on EAS, please join the EAS Support Group for Radio on Facebook.