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Federal Communications Commission

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Operations & Emergency Management Division, Public Safety & Homeland
Security Bureau


Mission:  The Operations and Emergency Management Division (OEM) helps maintain the readiness of the Federal Communications Commission to respond to all threats and emergencies, conducts and coordinates incident management activities, and supports public safety and national security initiatives.


OEM Operations:  The OEM operations are conducted through the following organizational units:


  • FCC Operations Center:  The Operations Center manages and supports the FCC’s 24 x 7 watch and reporting center.  The Operations Center contact information is:

The Operations center also engages in public safety and homeland security missions by maintaining situational awareness on communications, supporting incident response, and serving as a classified and emergency communications center.

  •  High Frequency Direction Finding Center (HFDF):  The HFDF Center resolves HF interference cases, supports law enforcement partners, performs homeland security and regulatory activities, and serve as the centralizing office for HF interference.
  • Plans and Programs Branch:  The Plans and Programs Branch coordinates continuity testing, training, and exercises across the Commission and develops plans that support FCC preparedness against all hazards.
  • Incident Management Team (IMT):  OEM, working within PSHSB, has full-time dedicated staff responsible for conducting or supporting emergency response activities.  OEM performs many of the functions necessary for incident response, and through the FCC’s flexible IMT construct, leverages the full capabilities of the FCC to assist with the identification and restoration of critical communications infrastructure. 


OEM/IMT emergency response work is initiated through our relationship with the Department of Homeland Security and internally in support of the FCC’s mission essential functions.  An overview of our duties includes:

  • Emergency Support Function #2 Team:  The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) uses Emergency Support Functions (ESFs) to provide the structure for coordinating Federal interagency support during an emergency response. “ESF-2” is the Federal Coordinating Mechanism for Communications.  The FCC and DHS have put in place the following pre-scripted Mission Assignments that outline FCC duties during an emergency response:
  • Roll Call
  • Spectrum Management & Coordination
  • Public Alert and Warning
  • Logistical Coordination Assistance


  • FCC-wide IMT Duties:
    • Spectrum Management.  Providing spectrum management and frequency allocation for non-Federal entities
    • Situational Awareness.  Collecting, compiling, and analyzing communications infrastructure and service outages and restoration information
    • External Staffing.  Providing trained staff members to support communications restoration teams
    • Assistance to Licensees and Stakeholders.  Assisting with the provision of communications support to local, state, tribal, territorial, insular area, and Federal governments, including public safety entities
    • Outreach.  Conducting outreach to all FCC licensees to determine: 1) their needs and 2) whether they have resources to offer that would aid the restoration effort. 
    • Regulatory Support and Enforcement.  Performing functions as required by law with respect to all entities that are licensed or regulated by the FCC, including (but not limited to) the extension, discontinuance, or reduction of common-carrier facilities or services; the control of common-carrier rates, charges, practices, and classifications; the construction, authorization, activation, deactivation, or closing of radio stations, services, and facilities; the assignment of radio frequencies to FCC licensees; the investigation of violations of pertinent law and regulation; and the initiation of appropriate enforcement actions.
    • Public and Consumer Education.  The FCC publishes tip sheets and other information to media and public sources to provide best practices for communicating during disasters.
  • Training  Assist with developing and conducting communications restoration training and exercises.


OEM Policy:  OEM promotes policy objectives that increase the resilience of communications infrastructure in order to support life saving, life sustaining, and national security communications.  This policy work includes:


  • The National Security and Emergency Preparedness Communications Executive Committee (ExCom)
  • Continuity of Operations (COOP)
  • National Level Exercises (NLEs)
  • Priority Services
    • Telecommunication Services Priority Program (TSP)
    • The Government Emergency Telecommunications Service (GETS)
    • Wireless Priority Service (WPS)


OEM Contact Information:

  • FCC 24/7 Operations Center




Regional Liaisons:


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