EAS Under The Microscope At Thursday Hearing


At its January Open Meeting on Tuesday morning (1/30), the Commission will hear details from a preliminary report into the false inbound missile alert that sent the state of Hawaii into panic on the morning of Jan. 13.

Ahead of that presentation from the Public Safety & Homeland Security Bureau is a Senate Commerce Committee hearing set for 10am Thursday (1/25) that delves into the policy concerns surrounding the use — and effectiveness — of Emergency Alert Systems.

Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), who serves as the chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, will convene the hearing, titled “This is Not a Drill: An Examination of Emergency Alert Systems.”

Wireless Emergency Alerts, as well as recent system failures, including but not limited to the mistaken missile alert in Hawaii, will be discussed.

The Jan. 13 incident across Hawaii will likely be a key focus of the event.

At the request of Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, the committee intends to hold a future field hearing in the 50th state to focus specifically on the missile system alert failure.

Witnesses for Thursday’s hearing, in Hart 253, are:

  • FCC Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau Chief Lisa Fowlkes
  • CTIA – The Wireless Association VP Scott Bergmann
  • NAB EVP/CTO Sam Matheny


The Hill: Hawaii illustrates that America’s alert system is fragile, fragmented and outdated (1/19/2018)

John M. Lawson, Executive Dir., Advanced Warning and Response Network (AWARN) Alliance