(LEX 18) – You know those emergency alerts on your phone that make you jump out of your skin during severe weather or an Amber Alert? If you get a good little scare when you hear that noise, be prepared for a National Test of that system on October 3.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on October 3, 2018. The WEA portion of the test commences at 2:18 p.m. EDT, and the EAS portion follows at 2:20 p.m. EDT. The test will assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed.
The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones that are connected to wireless providers participating in WEA. This is the fourth EAS nationwide test and the first national WEA test. Previous EAS national tests were conducted in November 2011, September 2016, and September 2017 in collaboration with the FCC, broadcasters, and emergency management officials in recognition of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month.
The WEA test message will have a header that reads “Presidential Alert” and text that says:
“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”
This is the sound you should expect.