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Today, advanced multimedia services such as video conferencing and video streaming are widely used. In these applications, coded video signals are transmitted over error prone channels. Lossy source coding together with channel errors cause more degradation in the quality of received video. Hence, many error control techniques have been developed in the last ten years. Unequal error protection (UEP) is one of the promising techniques to address this issue. The efficiency of UEP increases by carefully considering the error sensitivity of each protected part. In addition, the video layers in a scalable video coding (SVC) stream have different importance. Consequently, applying UEP on scalable video signal improves the efficiency and reliability of a video transmission system. In this paper, we propose a protection method for enhancing the quality of scalable video over error prone networks for a wide range of error rates. The proposed method makes use of Reed Solomon codes for unequal error protection. The scalable extension of H.264/AVC is chosen as the encoder module. Experimental results show a significant improvement of 1.27 dB in average, when compared with conventional methods. In addition comparing the results with equal error protection shows an improvement of 4.13 dB in high packet loss rates. It should be noted that the proposed method is far less complex compared to other existing methods like genetic algorithm (GA) and hill-climbing which use a UEP approach.