Broadcast Television & Radio
In addition to participating in the Emergency Alert System, broadcast television and radio stations are a vital component of our warning system. Local television and radio stations routinely broadcast official "Watches" and "Warnings" issued by the National Weather Service as well as forecasts and storm tracks developed by on-air meteorologists. Television, in particular, is an excellent source of emergency information since graphics such as radar displays and maps can be used to describe the event in detail.
Visit the websites of the local network affiliates to find out more about their severe weather warning programs:
Disadvantages of a TV / Radio
Broadcast television and radio, while being an excellent source of information, have one major disadvantage as a means of receiving a warning. Your radio or television has to be on and you have to be able to hear it or see it. If the TV or radio is not on or you are in another room, you will probably miss the warning. A normal TV or radio will not wake you up in the middle of the night to inform you that a tornado warning has been issued. For this reason, you should not rely on broadcast television or radio as your sole source of emergency warning.
Emergency Alert System (EAS)
The Emergency Alert System (EAS), adopted in 1997 is the successor to the old Emergency Broadcast System (EBS). The Emergency Alert System is composed of AM, FM, and television broadcast stations as well as cable television, operating in cooperation with local authorities to provide uniform and consistent information in an emergency. Participation in the local Emergency Alert System is voluntary however the following stations have agreed to broadcast local emergency alerts if requested:
- WBAP (820 a.m.) Radio
- KEC-56 (162.400 MHz) NOAA Weather Radio
Other local broadcasters can pick up the message from any of these sources and rebroadcast it at their discretion. You can recognize an EAS message from the distinctive tone that begins each broadcast. The announcer will also identify the broadcast as an activation of the Emergency Alert System. In an emergency, you should stay tuned to participating EAS stations to receive emergency warnings and situation updates.