Broadcast Emergency Planning

Wisconsin has consistently been a leader in Broadcast Emergency Planning.

Wisconsin has consistently been a leader in Broadcast Emergency Planning.

Wisconsin’s proud pioneering heritage

  • Wisconsin had the first completed State EAS Plan back when EAS originated, which was then distributed as a template to all other states.
  • Wisconsin’s Amber Alert is one of the best-managed programs in the country, averaging only three Amber Alerts per year.
  • Wisconsin was the first state to launch Media Security and Reliability Council (MSRC) Committees statewide.
  • Wisconsin is one of the first states to initiate a state-issued Broadcaster ID Card program, to help ensure our broadcast engineers’ access to their transmitters during disaster.
Y100 increases radiothon total despite tower troubles
Amber Alert

The Wisconsin Amber Alert Program, started in April 2003, is a cooperative effort of the following organizations.

  • Wisconsin Department of Justice – Division of Criminal Investigation
  • Dane County Public Safety Communications Center
  • Wisconsin Department of Transportation
  • Wisconsin Educational Communications Board
  • Wisconsin Public Radio
  • Wisconsin EAS Committee
  • Wisconsin Broadcasters Association and of course, Wisconsin broadcast stations statewide

Visit Wisconsin’s Amber Alert Program website for details.

Emergency Alert System

For information on the Wisconsin State EAS Plan, visit the following page:

The following information can be found at the Wisconsin EAS website:

  • Wisconsin State EAS Plan
  • Dane County EAS Local Plan
  • Link to FCC-required EAS Handbook
  • Link to Wisconsin Amber Alert website
  • New Event Code EAS Encoder Update Information
  • Daylight Saving Time Date Change Update Information
  • For a list showing dates and times of the Wisconsin EAS Required Monthly Test (RMT), as well as a listing of the upcoming Required Weekly Test (RWT) on Wisconsin Public Radio (WPR) EAS State Relay (SR) stations, consult the WPR EAS page.

FCC DIRS Program
FCC Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS)

DIRS has been created to allow communications companies to report the status and needs of their operations to the FCC during times of crisis. All broadcasters and cable operators should register on the DIRS website.

During a disaster, you will be contacted by the FCC if DIRS is activated in your area.  At that point, stations and cable operators will be requested to report their on-air / off-air status on a daily basis, as well as any needs they have.

The FCC has proactively reached out to the broadcast community with this program to help us stay on the air during a disaster.  WBA encourages all member stations to avail themselves of this valuable program.  Stations must pre-register on the site before a disaster occurs. Details on the program can be found on the Wisconsin EAS website DIRS page.


Follow the Useful Emergency Planning links on this page to learn more on our Broadcast Emergency Planning resources… and we have more programs under development, so visit this page often for updates. WBA would like to acknowledge the cooperation and participation of all Wisconsin broadcasters in these programs, as well as the excellent working relationship we have with the National Weather Service, Wisconsin Emergency Management, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice – Division of Criminal Investigation, without whom these programs would not be possible.