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Common Alerting Protocol Public Review Draft

Emergency Warning Standard Launched at World Disaster Conference

McLean, VA, USA. June 23, 2003.

The Partnership for Public Warning (PPW) [recently June 23, 2003] announced support for the release of a draft "Common Alerting Protocol" (CAP) for public comment. CAP is an open, non-proprietary standard for the exchange of emergency alerts and public warnings over data networks and computer-controlled warning systems, developed by members of the OASIS global standards consortium. CAP is based on work contributed to OASIS by The Partnership for Public Warning.

"CAP will help get a consistent warning message out simultaneously over many different warning systems. That increases warning effectiveness while making the work of warning officials easier," said Ken Allen, Executive Director of PPW, a non-profit institute based near Washington, D.C.

"CAP will also help in the detection of patterns in local warnings that might indicate an undetected hazard or hostile act. And it provides a template for effective warning messages based on best practices identified in academic research and real-world experience. The Partnership for Public Warning is proud to have encouraged the evolution of CAP."

"We're releasing this draft for review and comment now," said R. Allen Wyke, chair of the OASIS Emergency Management Technical Committee, "because the U.S. and the international community are facing some immediate choices about how to provide effective public warning and inter-agency alerting." Wyke said the CAP standard uses the XML data language and supports the Web services technology, while maintaining compatibility with existing public warning systems.

The CAP draft will be presented to the global emergency management community during a workshop at the 13th World Conference on Disaster Management in Toronto, Ontario. The presenter will be Art Botterell, chairman of the OASIS subcommittee responsible for drafting the CAP specification, and convener of the Common Alerting Protocol Working Group, a consortium of more than 130 public safety and technology professionals worldwide that developed and tested prototypes of the CAP standard.

Details of the CAP standard and the comment process are available online at:

The PPW ( is a not-for-profit consortium of industry, government and other organizations committed to saving lives and property by improving the nation's public warning capability. PPW's mission is to develop consensus on processes, standards and systems in order to ensure that people at risk from terrorism, accidents and natural disasters receive the right information at the right time so that they can take timely and appropriate action to save lives, reduce loss and speed recovery. It is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, formed with the assistance of The MITRE Corporation (, a not-for-profit company chartered to work in the public interest to address issues of critical national importance.

The World Conference on Disaster Management ( is the premier North American event for training and networking across all disciplines of Disaster Management. Presented by the Canadian Centre for Emergency Preparedness, WCDM is the largest forum covering the full spectrum of disaster management issues, attracting experts and practitioners from around the world to review the latest findings, trends, products, and services in disaster management.


Ken Allen
The Partnership for Public Warning (PPW)
7515 Colshire Drive M/S N655
McLean, VA 22102
Tel: +1 (703) 883-7620
Tel: +1 (703) 883-2745
Fax: +1 (703) 883-3689

R. Allen Wyke
OASIS Emergency Management Technical Committee
Tel: +1 919.806.2440


Prepared by Robin Cover for The XML Cover Pages archive. See details in the news story "Public Comment Draft for the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP)." General references in "XML and Emergency Management."

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