Emergency Alert System
The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is a system that provides the President of the United States with the capability to provide immediate communications and information to the general public at the national, state, or local level during periods of national emergency. The EAS may also be used by state and local governments, in order to disseminate emergency information to the public in their area. AMBER alerts are also broadcast over the EAS.
EAS works by tying together governmental agencies with media broadcasting stations, in order to allow for immediate and direct dissemination of emergency messages.
The state of Illinois is broken up into 10 local areas. Will County is located in area 6, which also includes Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Grundy, Lake, and McHenry Counties.
Each area is served by 2 local primary stations, which will forward National and State EAS messages. The LP-1 for area six is WGN AM 720, and the LP-2 is WBBM AM 780. An additional station, WLS AM 890 is a primary entry point (PEP) station. The PEP can be directly activated by the White House in the event of a national emergency.
The Will County EOC also monitors these stations for alerts, as well as two others. The first of these is the State Primary (SP) which is the State EOC in Springfield on 45.44 MHz. The second is the National Weather Service NOAA weather radio out of Chicago, on 162.425 MHz. The NOAA weather radio link is the key entry point for severe weather watches and warnings to be put out on the EAS.
Cross monitoring of all these various information sources forms a "web" of redundancy in the event that one component of the system fails to forward the message. The automatic features of the EAS is one of the key advantages over the old Emergency Broadcast System (EBS).
Stations participating in the Will County EAS include:
WJOL - 1340 AM
WSSR - 96.7 FM
WJCH - 91.9 FM
WCCQ - 98.3 FM
WRXQ - 100.7 FM
Comcast Cable Systems
Other Alerts and Information
AMBER ALERTS (Missing / Endangered Children)
To activate the Amber Alert Notification Plan in Illinois, law enforcement agencies must ensure the following criteria are met:
Law enforcement must confirm a child has been abducted.
The child must be under the age of 16 or have a proven mental or physical disability.
Law enforcement must believe the child is in danger of serious bodily harm or death.
There is enough descriptive information about the child, abductor, and/or suspect's vehicle to believe an immediate broadcast alert will help.
You will receive severe weather alerts when information from the National Weather Service has been issued affecting Will County. Due to the unique circumstances of each weather event, severe weather alerts will be relayed as deemed appropriate based upon the type of weather event, the location, duration, areas affected, and other criteria determined at the time the weather event occurs.
GENERAL EMERGENCY ALERTS
Messages sent when there is a general emergency of interest to all or a significant portion of Will County. Such circumstances may include, but are not necessarily limited to hazardous materials releases, nuclear power station accidents, long-term utility disruptions, and national emergencies.
POLICE EMERGENCY ALERTS
Messages sent when there is an emergency situation that would immediately affect residents, such as a dangerous situation that would necessitate an evacuation, or to be alerted of a dangerous person.
If you have any questions, or would like further information on alerts or the Emergency Alert System (E.A.S.), please contact our office.