MOLINE, IL -WQPT, Quad Cities PBS has received a grant from the PBS Warning Alert and Response Network (WARN) program to a fund power backup and hardening project for WQPT studios and transmitters.
WQPT will purchase, install and test back-up equipment required to maintain the station's broadcast of Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) to cellular telephone companies for up to 72 hours in the event of a power outage. WQPT will have the system installed by August 31.
"We are pleased to be working with PBS and the Department of Commerce on the WARN program. Not only will it improve uninterrupted service to our viewers in times of emergency or crisis, but it will protect their investment in public television," said WQPT Director Mary Pruess.
On June 1, 2010, the Department of Commerce awarded PBS a grant under the WARN Act of 2005, which allowed PBS to implement a project establishing the PBS WARN program. With this grant, PBS assists stations like WQPT comply with an FCC a mandate to provide a backup pathway for sending WEAs from FEMA to cellular phone companies. One year later, the Department of Commerce authorized an additional round of funding, which allowed PBS to award sub-grants for the purchase and installation of the generators, UPS systems and related power backup and hardening equipment that would ensure continuous dissemination of WEAs.
For more information on Wireless Emergency Alerts and the Commercial Mobile Alert System (CMAS) visit http://www.pbs.org/about/WARN.
WQPT signed on the air November 3, 1983. WQPT's signal covers all or part of 10 counties in western Illinois and three in eastern Iowa. The station reaches 309,000 households and estimates 50,000 households view the station on a weekly basis.
WQPT is a public media service of Western Illinois University Quad Cities located in Moline, IL.# # #