The Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) service, formerly known as the Commercial Mobile Alert Service (CMAS), is a new national capability for delivering geographically-targeted alerts to the public on mobile devices. This report describes the adoption of the WEA service by the New York City Office of Emergency Management (NYC OEM).
NYC OEM was the first alert originator to adopt the WEA service, so the agency experienced some unique challenges. The agency had to obtain software compatible with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS), of which WEA is a component, before any vendor had a proven product. NYC OEM also piloted FEMA's four-step process for acquiring emergency alerting authority on IPAWS. In addition, NYC OEM participated in the first regional demonstration of the new WEA service end to end (i.e., successfully originating, authenticating through the Federal alert aggregator, broadcasting, and delivering a WEA message to geographically-targeted mobile devices).