Goto Section: 73.1230 | 73.1300 | Table of Contents

FCC 73.1250
Revised as of December 4, 2012
Goto Year:2011 | 2013
§  73.1250   Broadcasting emergency information.

   (a) Emergency situations in which the broadcasting of information is
   considered as furthering the safety of life and property include, but
   are not limited to the following: Tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, tidal
   waves, earthquakes, icing conditions, heavy snows, widespread fires,
   discharge of toxic gasses, widspread power failures, industrial
   explosions, civil disorders and school closing and changes in school
   bus schedules resulting from such conditions. See also §  73.3542,
   Application for Emergency Authorization, for requirements involving
   emergency situations not covered by this section for which prior
   operating authority must be requested.

   (b) If requested by responsible public officials, a station may, at its
   discretion, and without further FCC authority, transmit emergency
   point-to-point messages for the purpose of requesting or dispatching
   aid and assisting in rescue operations.

   (c) If the Emergency Alert System (EAS) is activated for a national
   emergency while a Local Area or State emergency operation is in
   progress, the national level EAS operation must take precedence. If,
   during the broadcasting of Local Area or State emergency information,
   the EAS codes or Attention Signal described in §  11.12 of this chapter
   are used, the broadcasts are considered as being carried out under a
   Local Area or State EAS plan.

   (d) Any emergency operation undertaken in accordance with this section
   may be terminated by the FCC if required in the public interest.

   (e) Immediately upon cessation of an emergency during which broadcast
   facilities were used for the transmission of point-to-point messages
   under paragraph (b) of this section, or when daytime facilities were
   used during nighttime hours by an AM station in accordance with
   paragraph (f) of this section, a report in letter form shall be
   forwarded to the FCC in Washington, DC, setting forth the nature of the
   emergency, the dates and hours of the broadcasting of emergency
   information, and a brief description of the material carried during the
   emergency. A certification of compliance with the noncommercialization
   provision of paragraph (f) of this section must accompany the report
   where daytime facilities are used during nighttime hours by an AM
   station, together with a detailed showing, under the provisisons of
   that paragraph, that no other broadcast service existed or was

   (f) AM stations may, without further FCC authority, use their full
   daytime facilities during nighttime hours to broadcast emergency
   information (examples listed in paragraph (a) of this section), when
   necessary to the safety of life and property, in dangerous conditions
   of a general nature and when adequate advance warning cannot be given
   with the facilities authorized. Because of skywave interference impact
   on other stations assigned to the same channel, such operation may be
   undertaken only if regular, unlimited-time service, is non-existent,
   inadequate from the standpoint of coverage, or not serving the public
   need. All operation under this paragraph must be conducted on a
   noncommercial basis. Recorded music may be used to the extent necessary
   to provide program continuity.

   (g) Broadcasting of emergency information shall be confined to the
   hours, frequencies, powers and modes of operation specified in the
   station license, except as otherwise provided for AM stations in
   paragraph (f) of this section.

   (h) Any emergency information transmitted by a TV or Class A TV station
   in accordance with this section shall be transmitted both aurally and
   visually or only visually. TV and Class A TV stations may use any
   method of visual presentation which results in a legible message
   conveying the essential emergency information. Methods which may be
   used include, but are not necessarily limited to, slides, electronic
   captioning, manual methods (e.g., hand printing) or mechanical printing
   processes. However, when an emergency operation is being conducted
   under a national, State or Local Area Emergency Alert System (EAS)
   plan, emergency information shall be transmitted both aurally and
   visually unless only the EAS codes are transmitted as specified in
   §  11.51(b) of this chapter.

   [ 43 FR 45847 , Oct. 4, 1978, as amended at  50 FR 30947 , July 31, 1985;
    59 FR 67102 , Dec. 28, 1994;  60 FR 56000 , Nov. 6, 1995;  65 FR 30003 , May
   10, 2000]

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Goto Section: 73.1230 | 73.1300

Goto Year: 2011 | 2013
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