The Emergency Rocket Communications System was designed to provide a reliable and survivable emergency communications method for the United States National Command Authority, using a UHF repeater placed atop a Blue Scout rocket or Minuteman II intercontinental ballistic missile. ERCS was deactivated as a communication means when President George H.W. Bush issued a message to stand down SIOP-committed bombers and Minuteman IIs on 27 September 1991. Headquarters SAC was given approval by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to deactivate the 494L payloads beginning 1 October 1992. However, Headquarters SAC believed it was inefficient and unnecessary to support ERCS past fiscal year 1991, and kept the accelerated deactivation schedule.