New Facility Boosts Hawai‘i’s Emergency Broadcasting Capabilities

HONOLULU’s parent company aio partnered with FEMA, KHKA and more organizations on the project to increase public safety during hurricane season and beyond.


PEP Emergency Broadcast Facility

Photo: Jarin Kobashigawa


Hurricane season begins in June, and just in time, Hawai‘i’s first Primary Entry Point emergency broadcast facility was unveiled at Kahauiki Village last month. The communication center can be self-sufficient for more than 60 days without outside intervention, forming a cornerstone for the state’s emergency preparedness.


The facility has been years in the making and culminated from the partnership of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Institute of Human Services, the KHKA radio station and aio, HONOLULU Magazine’s parent company. It is part of FEMA’s National Public Warning System and the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System, which is responsible for sending emergency alerts to mobile phones and over radio and television broadcasting.


“Radio continues to play a critical role in emergency response,” says Duane Kurisu, chairman of aio. “We are honored to partner with FEMA to offer this vital public service to our community.”


PEP Radio Station

Michael W. Perry, longtime radio host, in the PEP radio station. Photo: Jarin Kobashigawa


The emergency facility is fortified to withstand various natural disasters and acts of terrorism so it can continue to broadcast messages from the government and community organizations over AM-radio station KHKA, CBS 1500, when other communications channels are unavailable. It’s also stocked with backup communications equipment, power generators and enough food and water for a two-person team, who can operate the facility independently.


SEE ALSO: Hurricane Preparedness Tips for Hawai‘i’s Storm Season


PEP Emergency Broadcast Facility Supplies

Photos: Jarin Kobashigawa


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts a 50% chance of above-normal tropical cyclone activity this year. Keep a radio in your emergency supply kit so you can tune in to NOAA Weather Radio for warnings and forecasts on frequencies 162.400 (channel 1), 162.450 (channel 3), 162.500 (channel 6) and 162.550 (channel 7) in the Hawaiian Islands.


SEE ALSO: 5 Tips to Get Your Home Ready for a Busy Hurricane Season in Hawai‘i