EMERGENCY BROADCAST SYSTEM: United States. 1964. The Emergency Broadcast System was established in 1964 to provide a rapid means of communication to allow the President to communicate with the American public during war, escalating conditions that threaten war, or other national crisis. The basic operational requirement for the national Emergency Broadcast System was that radio and television audio transmissions could be activated within 5 minutes for Presidential messages. By 1978 the system was also being used at the state and local level for warning in day-to-day emergencies, including natural disasters.
Tirana, Bardyl R., Director Defense Civil Preparedness Agency, letter to Robert J. Horrigan, President, Southern Chapter, California Emergency Services Association, 10 August 1978, printed in Journal of Civil Defense, Volume XI, Number 6, December 1978, p. 21.