On Wednesday, October 4, a test is planned of the entire nation’s Emergency Alert system, a tryout to ensure everything is working correctly in the event of a big, national disaster or attack.
This will come over your phone, your radio and your television. Do not freak out. It's is only a test.
Why is a national test necessary?
Federal emergency management coordinators need to make sure the national alert system is still an effective way to warn Americans about emergencies, natural catastrophes, attacks and accidents at the national level.
What will the emergency message say?
The exact wording hasn't been released yet but it's very likely to be something along these lines: “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."
On cellphones, it will come as a text message:
“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”
Phones on which the main menu set to Spanish will see this: “ESTA ES UNA PRUEBA del Sistema Nacional de Alerta de Emergencia. No se necesita acción.”
When will it happen?
On Wednesday, October 4, the message will go out at the same moment across every time zone in the United States.
That means 2:20 in the afternoon in the East, 1:20 p.m. Central time, 12:20 p.m. Mountain time and 11:20 a.m. on the West Coast. People in Alaska will hear it at 10:20 a.m. and in Hawaii the alarms will go off at 8:20 a.m.
How long will the test last?
The test is scheduled to last approximately one minute. It will only go out once, there will be no repeats.
Please tell everyone you know about this test. We do not want people to panic when the test is done.
Keep your head down and keep the faith