STORY BY MONICA BADOLIAN, STAFF WRITER
PHOTO FROM WFLA
The federal government will test the emergency alert system nationwide at 11:20 a.m. PST on Wednesday, Oct. 4. Cell phones, televisions, and radios will receive the test messages, emitting sound on all mediums and vibration on cell phones.
Testing is intended to ensure the systems continue to provide adequate emergency warnings, particularly for those occurring on a national level. The Oct. 4 test, set to be broadcast for 30 minutes, could be postponed due to widespread severe weather or other significant events. A backup date is Oct. 11.
According to NPR, the alert will read on cell phones: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.” Phones set to Spanish will display: “ESTA ES UNA PRUEBA del Sistema Nacional de Alerta de Emergencia. No se necesita acción.”
TV and radio will announce: “This is a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System, issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, covering the United States from 14:20 to 14:50 hours ET. This is only a test. No action is required by the public.”
Every three years, FEMA must conduct national tests of the Integrated Public Alert & Warning System (IPAWS). 2021 was the last year for the national test.