Nationwide-alert system testing Wednesday will affect all mobile phones, FEMA says

Only have a minute? Listen instead

By Hojun Choi | The Dallas Morning News (TNS)

In this Feb. 14, 2019, file photo, a person receives an emergency alert on their cellphone. (Courtesy: Simone/Adobe Stock)

Most U.S. mobile phone users will get a notification on their electronic devices Wednesday afternoon as part of a nationwide test of emergency alert systems, federal officials have announced.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will work with the Federal Communications Commission to test its emergency alert processes through radios and televisions, as well as consumer cellphones, according to a news release.

Wednesday will be the second time the test includes all cellular devices, the release stated.

Testing will start around 1:20 p.m. Central Daylight Time and will last for about 30 minutes, according to the federal agency. The message will read, “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed,” and will be sent in English or Spanish, depending on the device’s language settings.

“The purpose of the Oct. 4 test is to ensure that the systems continue to be effective means of warning the public about emergencies, particularly those on the national level,” the release stated.

If the Wednesday test has to be canceled because of “widespread severe weather or other significant events,” it will be rescheduled to Oct. 11, according to FEMA.

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