Just a heads up, you'll likely receive a Public Alert and Warning test scheduled for later today. This is the fourth National EAS (Emergency Alert System) test, but it is the FIRST National WEA (Wireless Emergency Alert) test.
At approximately 1:18pm CDT today, your cell phone should receive a Test Text Message and unless you have opted out of the warnings, your phone will alert you to the message. I wanted you to be aware of the alert so you aren’t alarmed when your cell phone alarms.
The WEA system is used to warn the public about dangerous weather, missing children, and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones. It allows customers whose wireless provider participates in WEA and who own a WEA compatible wireless phone to receive geo-targeted alerts of imminent threats to safety in their area through unique tones and vibration. The national WEA test will use the same special tone and vibration.
The WEA test will be sent through IPAWS (Integrated Public Alert and Warning System), as part of the nation's modern alert and warning infrastructure that automatically authenticates alerts. Cell towers will broadcast the WEA test for approximately 30 minutes. During this time, cell phones that are switched on and within range of an active cell tower should be capable of receiving the test message. Cell phones should receive the message once.
Receiving preparedness tips and timely information about weather conditions or other emergency events can make all the difference in knowing when to take action to be safe.
Download the FEMA app today at https://www.fema.gov/mobile-app. More information on the national test is available at https://www.fema.gov/Emergency-Alert-Test . Questions on the national test can be sent to FEMA-National-Test@fema.dhs.gov.