“Mastering the Emergency Alert Test: What You Need to Know”

“Get ready without panicking. Wednesday, October 4th, at 2:20 PM.

EDT, in the United States, there’s a specific, annoying electronic alert sound that should be ringing through every TV, radio, and phone.

This serves as an examination, merely an examination.

Officially, it’s known as the nationwide Emergency Alert System test. You know it’s a test, and there’s no real emergency because the test comes with an explanation.

“No, there’s no grand plot to unleash microscopic robots into people’s bodies. Indeed, this practice traces its roots back to the Cold War era of the 1950s. No, we cannot magically make you start speaking – if we could, it might result in substantial fines.

However, for the most part, this test serves as a vital means to ensure that in the event of a truly dire and substantial crisis, the American population can receive immediate alerts.

Now, let’s delve into some key details about this test:

why was there an emergency alert test
Image Source | Google Image By- Flickr

What exactly is the Emergency Alert System test, and how does it operate?
As per FEMA, the national test is comprised of two integral components that function harmoniously: the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system.”

WEA will be directed to all cell phones, while EAS will inform all radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers.

What will the Emergency Alert System test message say?
As soon as the emergency message goes out, broadcasting of TV and radio shows will be interrupted across the entire United States from 2:20 PM to 2:50 PM EDT. The message will convey:

This acts as a practice session for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Emergency Alert System, covering the entire United States from 14:20 to 14:50 EDT. This is only a test. No action is needed by the public.”

Phones will receive the warning tone, vibration, and a text message:

“This is a test of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”
For phones with the main menu set to Spanish, you will see this: “Esta es una prueba del Sistema Nacional de Alerta de Emergencia. No es necesario hacer nada.”

When is the Emergency Alert Test?
The alert will be broadcast simultaneously nationwide at 2:20 PM EDT on Wednesday, October 4th. Different time zones have different times, so make sure to check when you might be alerted.

at&t emergency alert test
Image Source | Google Image By- Wikimedia Commons

Will you receive the message if your phone is turned off?
The message will only be received on active cell phones. Even if your phone is on but the sound and vibration features are turned off, you will still receive the message.

If your phone happens to be set to Wi-Fi or airplane mode, you won’t receive the alert because the message is solely transmitted via the cellular network.

How loud will the alert be?
The type of noise and the general volume of the alert is similar to Amber Alerts or severe weather warnings issued by the National Weather Service.

Per FEMA’s guidance, the WEA notification, dispatched to every mobile device, will feature a distinctive tone and vibration, ensuring that the alert is accessible to all, including individuals with disabilities.

Why do we need the National Emergency Alert Test?
Federal emergency coordinators want to ensure that the National Alerting System still works for Americans at the national level in cases of emergency situations, natural disasters, attacks, and accidents.

What will the Emergency Alert Test sound like?

We’re unable to provide you with that information.
Those conducting the test want to make sure that if you hear an alert tone, you pay attention – other than for actual emergencies or authorized tests, playing the Emergency Alert System tone, attention signal, or the recorded message is against federal law.

In 2021, a proposed fine of $20,000 was issued against “The Dog Biscuit Radio Show” for broadcasting the

at&t emergency alert test
Image Source | Google Image By- Flickr

A critical scenario. In 2019, CBS’s television series “Young Sheldon” confronted a suggested penalty of $272,000 for simulating the Emergency Alert System tone.

The Federal Communications Commission stated in a statement about the radio show that sounding the tone when there is no real emergency or authorized test can lead to “alert fatigue,” where the public becomes desensitized to alerts and stops paying attention.

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