The decision is one step forward on the road opened by the Warning Alert and Response Network Act passed back in 2006. However, the initiative has a long way in front of it before becoming reality.

The FCC is now expected to appoint the agency responsible for the making of the messages and for their distribution to the carriers participating in the program. The phone companies are reuqired to comply with the new rules withing the next 10 months after the agency has been chosen. Also, they are required to create special tones or vibration alerts for disabled people.

Speaking of carriers, four of of them have already signed up on the list: T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint Nextel and AT&T.

According to the project, the alert system will send three types of messages:

– disaster alerts
– warnings could
– child abduction (“Amber Alerts”)

The project clearly steates that subscribers are not to bee charged for receiving the messages. Also, they can choose not to receive them.