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The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Get Alerts, Stay Alive PowerPoint Presentation
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The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Get Alerts, Stay Alive

The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Get Alerts, Stay Alive

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The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Get Alerts, Stay Alive

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  1. The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Get Alerts, Stay Alive 2013 Florida Emergency Notification: Vision Creation Workshop Antwane Johnson, Director, IPAWS


  3. RECENT EVENTS First CMAS/WEA AMBER Alert: "I think it is a wonderful idea, if one of mine [child] were missing I would want everyone in the world looking for them.” -- Donna Miller, December 18, 2012 “Residents in Texas received the first AMBER alert issued through IPAWS' CMAS/WEA system. The alert was issued in cooperation with the San Antonio Police Department and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).” -- Emergency Management Blog, December 19, 2012 “As of December 31, the Wireless AMBER Alerts program will end operations, as a part of the nation's transition to the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) program.Statistics show that the first three hours after an abduction are the most critical in recovery efforts, and being able to quickly engage the public in the search for an abducted child can help law enforcement bring that child home safely.” --WMBF, MYRTLE BEACH, SC

  4. RECENT EVENTS Super Storm Sandy “This Emergency Alert just popped up on my phone. Ten seconds later, the TV went out. Here we go…” — Heidi N. Moore, October 30, 2012 “COOL TECH: Loud alarm and screen alert about #sandy making landfall in NYC.” — Sree Sreenivasan, October 28, 2012 “As Hurricane Sandy headed for the city two weeks ago, sirens began ringing on some New Yorkers’ cell phones. The alarms were accompanied by messages telling them to stay inside; not to drive; or for those in Zone A, to evacuate. Government officials have been working with wireless carriers to build the alert system, which contacts anyone within an affected geographic area whose mobile devices can get text messages. The storm was the first time the system was used in New York.” -- New York Times, November 9, 2012 The emergency alerts showed up where and when they mattered.” -- O’Reilly Radar, October 30, 2012

  5. RECENT EVENTS • Tornado in Elmira, New York July 26, 2012 • “We put out the early warning, people got notice and knew what to do when a tornado approaches. The damage was bad, but we’re happy that no one got hurt, so that’s a success story we feel pretty good about. The more ways we can get the information out, the better the chance people have to be warned.” – Local NWS Spokesman • Star Gazette, August 1, 2012 • “Your warning of a tornado imminent in my area of New York, sent 7/26/12 via text message to my cell, was invaluable! From the bottom of my heart- THANK YOU National Weather Service!” – Citizen Post on Facebook • FCC Blog, August 30, 2012

  6. RECENT EVENTS “Technology That Keeps Us Safe: Wireless Emergency Alerts” “Although Florida was spared a hit from Isaac, we did get a lot of rain. While I am pretty calm in the face of severe weather…keeping the weather channel on tends to make my four year old paranoid. So instead of watching the weather, we hung out in the play room…from the other side of the house, I heard an unusual ringing. It sounded like an emergency alert ring, but I was sure the TV was off… I headed off to investigate. The TV was off. Could that sound have come from my phone? It sure did. My Samsung Galaxy S III sent me a text alert letting me know there was severe weather in my area. But this was no ordinary text message, the notification came with a special forced tone alert that overrode my volume setting. How smart is that?! When I turned on my phone I found a message from the National Weather Service alerting me to a tornado warning in the area. I turned on the TV, and sure enough a tornado warning had just been issued. Now that’s the way technology should work!”

  7. Alerting Authorities

  8. IPAWS is Operational Now! IPAWS Capabilities online: • Public safety officials can choose (optional) to use IPAWS for integrated distribution of alert and warning information within their jurisdiction • State/Local alerts sent thru IPAWS are distributed to: • Local radio and TV stations participating in local EAS • Cellular phones as Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) • NOAA for broadcast over local NOAA Weather All Hazards Radio Now online: • Websites and services • Public alerts published to IPAWS alert feed for distribution by internet information services and applications that choose to monitor IPAWS for alert information

  9. IPAWS-OPEN Operational COG and MOA Status Report (as of January 24, 2013) • A Collaborative Operating Group (COG) is an organization that is responsible for coordinating emergency management or incident response activities. COGs: • May be organized at the national level (e.g., the National Weather Service is a COG), multi-state level (e.g., regional mutual aid organization), state level, multi-county level, single county level, single municipality, or single agency • Are usually formed by government, although select private sector organization may also form COGs List published at:

  10. IPAWS-OPEN Developer MOA Status Report (as of January 24, 2013) • The IPAWS PMO continually engages the private sector to create awareness and understanding of the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP), which can be used by the private sector developers to incorporate existing and future technologies into IPAWS.  • 139 vendors currently have access to IPAWS-OPEN and are in some stage of developing IPAWS compliant origination or dissemination alerting tools • Vendors and alerting authorities are invited to the Joint Interoperability Testing Command (JITC) at Indian Head, MD, to test alert origination and dissemination tools and technologies against the CAP standard and IPAWS profile List published at:

  11. State of Florida – IPAWS Adoption by the Numbers ** As of January 25, 2013 * As of January 30, 2013

  12. RECENT EVENTS • Snowmageddon • “For D.C. area commuters stuck in snow, ‘it just felt hopeless’”. • A disastrous commute that began early that day and lasted well past midnight. • Thousands of commuters were stranded for hours, and hundreds of cars were abandoned on the road; information to commuters before and during the commute was sparse. • The Washington Metro Council of Governments called for recommendations on: • the information systems that gather travel information • development of better ways to relay that information to the public • launching a public education campaign to stress personal preparedness and the importance of heeding emergency directives • --The Washington Post: 01/28/11

  13. RECENT EVENTS • Hurricane Rita “Miles of Traffic as Texans Heed Order to Leave” • 3.7 million people evacuated from the Houston area and Texas coast and created a100 mile traffic jam that put evacuees in danger as Hurricane Rita approached. This was due in part to: • fear stemming from the memory of Katrina, and • vague and non-targeted evacuation instructions • “Probably the biggest failure of the whole process was communication – people not having their expectations met…if people know they’re going to be in a 20-hour drive, they can prepare for a 20-hour drive. If they think it’s going to be four or five, they… prepare for it with gasoline and water or food.” • At the pinnacle of the evacuation and traffic jam, even after logistical solutions were identified, public safety officials had difficulty communicating information to the public. • --The New York Times: 09/23/06

  14. RECENT EVENTS • “Colorado Wildfire Deaths Blamed on 911 Malfunction” • Three people in Colorado are dead after an emergency 911 system malfunctioned and failed to alert them to evacuate their homes ahead of a raging wildfire • The three victims had all contacted the Jefferson County 911 system to ask about the fire, but were not told by dispatchers to evacuate, and did not receive the automated notification in time to save their lives • Colorado authorities said they are investigating problems with an emergency notification system because some residents who had signed up to get wildfire warnings never got one. About 12 percent of people failed to get a warning about a wildfire in the mountains southwest of Denver • --(ABC News: 04/04/2012)

  15. RECENT EVENTS • “East Coast quake causes major cell service disruptions” • Cell service along the East Coast was spotty following a Virginia-based earthquake that was felt as far away as New England. • There were no reports of downed cell towers or wires, but mobile providers said that millions of people tried to make cell phone calls at the same time, resulting in overwhelmed cellular relay stations. • Cell service disruptions occur during periods of heavy call volumes because of a bottle-necking factor. • Like a highway that gets congested during rush hour, cellular infrastructure is not designed to handle the amount of calling traffic that occurs during emergency situations. • -- 08/23/11

  16. State and Local Considerations for Adopting and Using IPAWS

  17. Public Alert and Warning Essentials • The ability to warn the public of imminent danger has been a priorityfor civilizations throughout the world for thousands of years • In ancient times, people would use available tools to alert and warn their groups and villages. These tools included town criers, horns, conch shells, wood sticks, smoke, bells and other devices • We know that effectively warning the American People requires a partnership of people, systems, processes that: • effectively receives and shares information; and understands the emergency as it evolves • includes strategic governance, a decision making process, and authority to alert and warn • provides a method, technologies, and/or device(s) to convey the alert and message • builds in robust and regular training for those involved in public alerting and warning • provides for exercising and testing

  18. Public Alert and Warning Essentials To plan for a public warning program, an authority should consider the following: • Identify your jurisdiction’s vulnerabilities to identify needs and requirement • Identify who is authorized to originate and manage alerts (Emergency Manager, Incident Commander, Watch Officer, Public Information Officer, etc. • Identify and engage with warning partners to seektheir advice and council • Develop clear and repeatable warning policies, guidelines, procedures, training, test and exercise plan • Review and frequently update public warning plans and policies in close coordination with all warning partners • Educate the public on the importance of being informed and the use of warning sources • Test and Exercise Frequently

  19. Flawed Delivery? Why Alert Notification Systems Sometimes Fall Short • Telephone alerting systems’ main problems can be broken down into two general, yet contradictory, categories: • In some situations, officials did not have residents’ telephone number, making calls impossible • In other cases, something went wrong with the local automated notification system and calls weren’t delivered, perhaps because local circuit failures can occur during heavy call volume • There are over 331 million wireless telephone subscribers in the US; this is in stark contrast to the number of phone lines in the US, which dropped from 162.7 million in 2008 to 145.8 million in 2011 • Throughout the country, cities and counties use public awareness and incentive programs to encourage the public to subscribe to alerts • In two small counties in Colorado, subscription based alerting was just over 2%; in larger Colorado counties, the subscription rates are not much better • Even in New York City, alert subscription rates are at 12% • CMAS doesn’t send WEA messages through a one-to-one connection as land line and cellphone calls do. Instead, the carriers broadcast the message and the message is picked up by WEA-enabled mobile devices in the area. • CMAS/WEA is just one component of IPAWS – and even as IPAWS grows, it will not replace existing state and local alerting initiatives, but rather enhance them. By Rick Wimberly, Emergency Management Magazine, September/October 2012

  20. E.O. 13407 & Presidential Statement of Requirements

  21. Executive Order 13407 - Public Alert and Warning System • “It is the policy of the United States to have an effective, reliable, integrated, flexible, and comprehensive system to alert and warn the American people in situations of war, terrorist attack, natural disaster, or other hazards to public safety and well-being (public alert and warning system), taking appropriate account of the functions, capabilities, and needs of the private sector and of all levels of government in our Federal system, and to ensure that under all conditions the President can communicate with the American people.” To implement the policy, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall: [summarized] I. Inventory, evaluate, and assess …public alert and warning resources; II. Establish or adopt, … common alerting and warning protocols, standards, terminology, and operating procedures … to enable interoperability and the secure delivery of coordinated messages to the American people through as many communication pathways as practicable, VI. Ensure the conduct of training, tests, and exercises for the public alert and warning system; VII. Ensure the conduct of public education efforts VIII. Consult, coordinate, and cooperate with the private sector, IX. Administer the Emergency Alert System (EAS) as a critical component of the public alert and warning system; and X. Ensure that under all conditions the President of the United States can alert and warn the American people.

  22. 1995 Presidential Memorandum “Emergency Alert System (EAS) Statement of Requirements” “During periods of extreme national emergency, reliable communications are required to enable the President to reassure and give direction to the American people. Consequently, there, is a continuing requirement for a national-level communications capability to serve Presidential needs.” FEMA shall: • Act as WHMO’s Executive Agent for the development, operations and maintenance of the national-level EAS; • Bring the PEP system up to full operational capability and ensure compatibility with state and local EAS. • Phase out the dedicated circuitry and associated equipment of the Emergency Action Notification network and incorporate the network nodes into the national-level EAS as required. • Prepare guidance concerning the definition and use of Priority Four, and enhance procedures to disseminate National Emergency Information Programming. • Conduct tests and exercises. • Ensure the national-level EAS keeps pace with emerging technologies through the use of low-cost innovative techniques. “The national level EAS must be: Fully integrated from the national to local level, yet capable of independent local (Priority Two) and state (Priority Three) operations

  23. Emergency Emergency Alert System (EAS)

  24. Originally called the “Key Station System,” the CONtrol of ELectromagnetic RADiation (CONELRAD) was established in August 1951. Participating stations tuned to 640 & 1240 kHz AM and initiated a special sequence and procedure designed to warn citizens. The Evolution of Public Emergency Alerting 1951 - 1963 1963 - 1997 1997 - - - - - - - - present - CONELRAD EBS EAS IPAWS EAS jointly coordinated by the FCC, FEMA and NWS. Designed for President to speak to American people within 10 minutes. EAS messages composed of 4 parts: • Digitally encoded header • Attention Signal • Audio Announcement • Digitally encoded end-of-message marker • Provided for better integration with NOAA weather and local alert distribution to broadcasters IPAWS modernizes and integrates the nation’s alert and warning infrastructure. Integrates new and existing public alert and warning systems and technologies thru adoption of new alert information exchange format - the Common Alerting Protocol or CAP Provides authorities a broader range of message options and multiple communications pathways EBS was initiated to address the nation through audible alerts. It did not allow for targeted messaging. System upgraded in 1976 to provide for better and more accurate handling of alert receptions. Originally designed to provide the President with an expeditious method of communicating with the American Public, it was expanded for use during peacetime at state and local levels. original timeline info borrowed from: The Broadcast Archive by Barry Mishkind, The Eclectic Engineer

  25. IPAWS Architecture with National EAS National Emergency Alert System (EAS) FEMA Operations Centers • XM Siris Radio • NPR • Premier Radio Networks President FEMA PEP Stations IPAWS OPEN Alert Aggregator/ Gateways

  26. Emergency Alert System (EAS) Participants

  27. FEMA Primary Entry Point (PEP) StationsAs of December 31, 2012

  28. New PEP Station Modular Configuration

  29. Commercial Mobile Alerting System Wireless Emergency Alerts

  30. Commercial Mobile Alert System/Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA/CMAS) CarriersAs of December 31 • Status • “FCC Regulatory start” date for wireless carriers was April 7, 2012 • Early launch of capability to NYC completed in Dec 2011 • Carrier network readiness and handset availability varies • Carrier is the only source of info for network/handset status info

  31. IPAWS is the only way emergency managers can access the Commercial Mobile Alert System (CMAS) to send Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) Enables authorized public safety officials to send 90 character, geographically targeted, emergency alerts to cellular phones in a danger zone Uses “cell broadcast”technology to avoid network congestion Cellular carrier participation voluntary 112 carriers have opted-in Citizens may opt-out of receiving alerts New phones are delivered opted-in Significantly Different from SMS/email based alerting systems Not subscription based -- true location based alerting Sends alerts to phones in an area - not to a database of phone numbers For “Alerts” only…. not for notification type messages Only for emergencies categorized as: Imminent Threat (Severity, Urgency, Certainty) AMBER / Child Abduction Emergency Presidential (*** Cannot Opt-Out ***) Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) / Commercial Mobile Alert System (CMAS) • CMAS capability is free to alerters and alertees – no usage or text message charges CMAS is the result of Public-Private Partnership FEMA, FCC and Cellular Carriers

  32. Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) (As advertised by Carriers)

  33. WEA Compatible Phones so far…

  34. WEA Compatible Phones so far… AT&T Sprint T-Mobile Verizon Wireless US Cellular CELLCOM CRICKET

  35. NOAA Integration

  36. Integration with NOAA • NOAA Weather Radio alerting capability (HazCollect NWEM) Sep 2011 • Allows States, locals, tribal, territorial authorities to send alerts/warnings via NWR • NOAA began sending CMAS/WEA Alerts June 1, 2012

  37. Internet Services

  38. Internet Services / Applications • Internet web services and applications that choose may request access to monitor and retrieve public alerts in CAP format from IPAWS • IPAWS Public Alerts Feed is on-line as of September 2012 • Services then post or distribute emergency alerts information • e.g. Public Alerts web page publishes active alerts retrieved from NOAA and the USGS at Weather Channel App Developers Social Media, AOL, etc….

  39. Several of the States the IPAWS Program Management Office has communicated with expressed willingness to • Publish IPAWS information in their emergency management newsletters • Post information about IPAWS on their State emergency management website • Provide a link to the IPAWS website from their website • Host the IPAWS 5 minute video on their website • CALIFORNIA • • California has a website for explaining the benefits of IPAWS, provides guidance on how to sign up for IPAWS and applying for grants. • IDAHO • • Idaho has a operations booklet going through their implementation from October of 2011. Idaho has taken IPAWS and made their own Idaho State Alert & Warning System that incorporates all of the aspects of IPAWs.  • INDIANA • • Indiana’s April version of Indiana’s newsletter highlights the benefits to emergency managers and the people of Indiana of implementing IPAWS. • IOWA • • Iowa’s HSEMD July release that explains CMAS, the benefits of it and how they are applying to implement it in Iowa.

  40. Several of the States the IPAWS Program Management Office has communicated with expressed willingness to • Publish IPAWS information in their emergency management newsletters • Post information about IPAWS on their State emergency management website • Provide a link to the IPAWS website from their website • Host the IPAWS 5 minute video on their website • NEBRASKA • • Nebraska’s July 2012 newsletter to Emergency Managers discusses: (1) who is in the approval process for becoming an alerting authority through IPAWS; (2) explains to their county EMs the benefits of IPAWS; (3) describes where they are in the MOA process, and (4) details the steps they are going to take to implement IPAWS upon approval. • MINNESOTA • • • Minnesota has a full newsletter dedicated to IPAWS, educating Minnesota’s emergency managers about IPAWS. • WISCONSIN • • Wisconsin has posted a FEMA Regional presentation highlighting the benefits of IPAWS. 

  41. EMI Independent Study course for Alerting Authorities (IS-247a) • EMI Independent Study course for Alerting Authorities available on-line • As of November 30, 5820 people have completed IS-247/IS-247a

  42. IPAWS’ American People on-line course • The online course for the American People is currently in development; it is anticipated to be launched early 2013. • The American People course is designed to educate the public and demonstrate the relevance and importance of IPAWS in their lives before, during, and after a disaster.

  43. IPAWS Grant Language

  44. Funding from the Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) and the Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program (THSGP) may be used to enhance existing or establish new alert and warning programs Organizations seeking grants are encouraged to contact FEMA Grants Office and IPAWS Office prior to initiating program activities program guidance, tools, resources and updates are available contact IPAWS Office at Grants can be used for planning and equipment purchases Planning: development or enhancement of public alert and warning plans, interoperability governing bodies, development or enhancement of alert and warning assessments and inventories, development or enhancement of alert and warning protocols, planning for emerging technologies Equipment: design, construction , implementation, enhancement, replacement, and maintenance of emergency response communications systems and equipment, planning procurement and deployment of emerging technology systems FEMA IPAWS Language in Federal Grant Programs Remember, FEMA grant business is done through the State---counties, locals, private entities, etc. must go through/coordinate with the State to obtain grant funds

  45. RECENT EVENTS • “Italy: 7 Negligent In • Quake Warning” • “An Italian court convicted seven scientists and experts of manslaughter Monday for failing to adequately warn residents before a temblor struck central Italy in 2009 and killed more than 300 people. • The seven defendants were accused of giving ‘inexact, incomplete, and contradictory information’ about whether small tremors felt by L’Aquila residents in the weeks and months before the quake should have constituted grounds for a quake warning • The court in L’Aquila also sentenced the defendants to six years in prison. All are members of the national Great Risks Commission. • Ilaria Carosi, sister of one of the victims, told Italian state TV that officials must be held responsible ‘for taking their job lightly’”. • (Associated Press: 10/23/2012)

  46. For more information Email the IPAWS inbox: IPAWS Website: EMI Independent Study Course IS-247a: Mailing list for IPAWS Webinar notices:

  47. Contact Information Wade Witmer Deputy Director IPAWS National Continuity Programs U.S. Department of Homeland Security 500 C Street SW, Room 506 Washington, DC 20472 202.646.2523Office