Emergency Services & MOUs

Broadcast media is one of the more effective means for emergency service organisations to communicate with the public when critical events occur. Commercial radio plays a critical role, particularly as approximately 80% of Australians listen to commercial radio.

The commercial radio industry is heavily regulated by the Federal Government. As part of this regulation, the Australian Communications and Media Authority requires commercial radio stations to adhere to the Commercial Radio Codes of Practice. Code of Practice 8 sets out commercial radio broadcasters obligations in relation to the broadcast of emergency information. All commercial radio stations are bound by this Code.

As a result of the recommendations of the Victorian Royal Commission into the 'black Saturday' fires in Victoria in 2009, the Victorian Government approached the commercial radio industry in Victoria to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the broadcast of emergency information. Commercial radio broadcasters agreed to enter into an MoU which complements Code 8 and also sets out useful processes for communication of information between the broadcasters and the emergency service organisations.

The commercial radio industry has now entered into similar MoUs in New South Wales, South Australia and Queensland.

For more information, please contact Sarah Kruger (Head of Legal & Regulatory Affairs) at sarah.kruger@commercialradio.com.au or 02 9281 6577.