January 2017 Text-Only Printable PDF
 Publisher:  Information Station Specialists
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Hospital "Heads Up"
Security Must Be Vigilant
Inside and Out
WASHINGTON DC: Last month, Laura Wolf, the Critical Infrastructure Chief at the Department of Health and Human Services, sent health officials across the USA a stark message: ”ISIS has recently encouraged its followers to perpetrate lone wolf attacks on … hospitals.” The letter went on to say that there were no credible threats at that time but that it was being sent out of the need for “an abundance of caution.”

Caution must be in abundance due to a health care facility’s inherent “soft target” status: a mixture of vulnerable patients, visitors and workers intertwined with potentially hazardous materials and machinery.

Wolf’s letter reminds recipients to report suspicious activity and provides resources for professionals.

Dealing with threats not only involves protecting lives on the property but also warning those just outside the periphery to stay clear until it’s all-clear.

Facilities from coast to coast are employing a variety of techniques to accomplish this, including text and email notifications, black-out signs that activate to warn pedestrians and motorists. Even verbal warnings sent over car radios from Information Radio Stations. All three can be triggered simultaneously by security staff from mobile devices and other means.

Hospitals with Information Radio Stations that broadcast over car radios in their communities include Albany Medical Center (pictured above), Porter Health in Indiana and Santa Paula Hospital in California. The Central Intelligence Agency and the National Institute of Health in Washington have similar systems in place for staff evacuations. Email the publisher to request more information.
Cold Standoff at Standing Rock     
North Dakota Health Agency Deploys Resources to Protect Protestors, Press & Public Safety from Winter's Wrath
Standing Rock Incident
CANNON BALL, ND: With Donald Trump in the saddle in Washington DC, the Dakota Access Pipeline Project is back on-line. But many of those protesting the pipe at Standing Rock Reservation never went off-line ‒ even when the big chill arrived on the northern plains. They stayed put in their campers, tents and tee-pees as the landscape turned from a dusty brown to a flaky white.
“This is a dangerous situation in terms of North Dakota winters. They can be extremely severe. We are concerned that we don't have loss of life."...Tim  Wiedrich of North Dakota Department of Public Health

Watch this 2-minute video posted by the Morton County Sheriff's Department about how Emergency Advisory Radio is being deployed to protect pipeline protest participants.
Meanwhile in Bismarck, state health officials became concerned about the safety of participants. Enter Tim Wiedrich of the North Dakota Department of Public Health’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Section. Wiedrich made available a unique resource that potentially could save lives ‒ and limbs ‒ as the freeze set in: a RadioSTAT Portable Emergency Radio Station. Its 3-5 mile range was enough to cover the camp and nearby approach-roads with radio messages targeted to advise those in the cold about its dangers.
ND Emergency Official Broadcasting
North Dakota emergency preparedness employee records messages to be broadcast to visitors and participants at Standing Rock Reservation.
“It’s been in continuous use,” states Wiedrich. “We have a variety of important safety messages on the air which deal with preventing hypothermia and what to do if they are stranded in a storm.” Storms happen on the prairie with regularity. The agency is considering upgrading the system to broadcast National Weather Service Warnings when issued as well.
Pipeline Protesters
Protesters camp out to demonstrate objection to the Dakota Access Pipeline. Photo: Fall 2016.
The agency has teamed up with the Morton County Sheriff's Department to produce this YouTube piece that describes and promotes the radio service.

With Spring fewer than two months away, the weather will begin to warm and that brings additional concerns if the protests continue as expected. The camp is on the banks of the Missouri and Cannonball Rivers.

“Soon we will be switching to messages about flood dangers,” states Wiedrich.
Radio Roars Back!
Continues to Dominate Even Young Dashboards
NEW YORK, NEW YORK: A recently released study of American consumers shows that AM/FM radio continues to be sampled by more millennials than any other single medium – ahead of even live TV + DVR-TV by a full ten percentage points. The study by GfK Research was conducted on 25,000 respondents in the 18-35 age range.

Results show that 95% of 18-24 year olds and 98% of 25-34 year olds regularly use conventional broadcast media. Cord-based television – the nearest competitor - is now only watched by 85 and 88% of the same demographics, respectively, partly because nearly 33% in those age ranges use exclusively cordless media to watch TV, movies and video.

Affirmed by other recent studies, radio – which is most heavily consumed by motorists - continues to own the in-car media experience, even for young people in the 21st century. Reasons may revolve around its non-distracting nature and because it’s something millennials grew up listening to when in the car.

For Baby Boomers, radio’s dominance is old news, of course.
Er…old “school”..actually.
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Information Radio Stations is a generic term synonymous with Travelers Information Stations (TIS), Highway Advisory Radio Stations (HAR) / Highway Information Systems & Low Power Radio Stations (LPR). Operation of the stations is governed by FCC Part 90.242 Rules. A FCC license is required. Information Radio Stations may be fixed or portable. Subcomponents may include transmitter, antenna and ground system, digital voice player, wattmeter, cabinet with conventional or Corbin locks, lightning arrestors for RF, power and telephone lines, coaxial cable. Most stations employ black maximized antennas to discourage ice accumulation and security measures to prevent unauthorized program access. Options include synchronization, battery backup, solar power, remote programming by local, network or telco, multi-station audio distribution via RF or LAN / WAN or wireless network.