Amber Alerts

The Alaska AMBER Alert Plan is a voluntary partnership between law enforcement agencies, broadcasters and transportation agencies to activate an urgent bulletin in the most serious of child-abduction cases. Statistics show that the first few hours after a child abduction are critical to the outcome of the case. According to a study by the United States Department of Justice, three quarters of the children who are kidnapped and later found murdered were killed within the first three hours after being taken.

After the Law Enforcement agency determines that the information on a missing child meets the criteria for an Amber Alert, they issue an EAS code event with information on the abduction. TV and Radio Broadcasters then interrupt their regular programming to continue to air a description and or photo of the abducted child and suspected abductor. Highway road signs will also activate at this time.

The goal of the Alaska AMBER Alert Plan is to instantly galvanize the entire state to assist in the search for and safe return of the child. You can now sign up to receive free wireless text messages when am AMBER Alert is issued.

Did you know you could sign up to receive AMBER Alert bulletins on Facebook! Go to the Amber Alerts Facebook page and select your state under the “AMBER Pages” tab, then click “Like” for your state. The AMBER Alerts will be sent to you through the Facebook “News Feed” feature.

Activation Criteria for Alaska

  • • The abduction involves a child or children under 18 years of age, or someone with a known mental or physical disability; and
  • • Local law enforcement is reasonably certain that an abduction has occurred and the victim is believed to be in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death; and
  • • Enough descriptive information is available about: the victim; the suspect; and/or the suspect’s vehicle to assist with the safe recovery of the victim and/or the apprehension of the suspect; and
  • • Information on the abduction has been entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) and flagged as a Child Abduction (CA) or AMBER Alert (AA).

AMBER Alerts will NOT be used for Runaways or Family Abductions unless investigation determines that the victim’s life is in immediate danger.

The AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alert Plan was created as a powerful legacy to 9 year-old Amber Hagerman who was kidnapped and murdered in Arlington, Texas in 1996. As a result of Amber’s murder, the Dallas/Fort Worth Association of Radio Managers teamed up with local law enforcement in northern Texas and developed this innovative early warning system to help find abducted children. Already the AMBER Plan has assisted in the speedy recovery of a number of children.

Nationwide Statistics

Statistics from the National U. S. Department of Justice Amber Alert website, current as of December 23, 2015

Children rescued specifically because of AMBER Alert 800
Children rescued because of Wireless Emergency Alerts 25
AMBER Plans throughout the US 86

The Broadcaster’s Amber Pledge

Broadcasters will do what they do best; they will get the information out to the public.

They will keep the attention of their viewers and listeners engaged during the critical first hours of an Amber Alert.

They will continue to follow the story and broadcast any breaking news or updates until its final conclusion.

The purpose of radio and television broadcasting is to serve the public which is similar to law enforcement and to operate in the Public Interest. Among all the technological and operational changes especially in recent years, these tenets are one constant since the Telecommunications Act of 1934. And this is why broadcasters in Dallas Texas began what is now called the Amber Alert and why today the broadcast community in Alaska will do all they can do to help law enforcement bring home an abducted child.

It has been said that the advent of the Amber Program has been the greatest example of trust and partnership between broadcasters and law enforcement. The Alaska Broadcasters Association and its member’s pledges to keep this trust. While we do not participate in the decision making process that triggers an Amber Alert, radio and television stations, together with cable systems are critical to the program’s success.

In conclusion, Broadcasters face many of the same challenges as those in law enforcement.

  1. Keeping up with technology: ABA’s EAS ENDEC Programming Project
  2. Integrating soon to be mandated Multi-User Emergency Warning systems into existing EAS systems
  3. The need of training, training and more training.

Silver Alerts

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Silver Alert is a voluntary partnership between law enforcement agencies, state and local government, and Alaska’s media and broadcasters to alert the public when a vulnerable adult is missing and believed to be in serious danger. The system uses media and broadcast releases, email, social media, and the State’s transportation 511 system to distribute a description of the missing adult.

Silver Alert Hotline

855-SILVR99 or 855-745-8799

Silver Alert Website