Mobile users expect test messages from the federal government beginning at 2:18 pm EDT Thursday, FEMA says.
Federal officials previously announced that the government has a system for sending messages to all mobile users in the event of a serious weather or other emergency.
On Thursday, the government is planning to test the system.
So expect to receive a text message beginning at 2:18 pm EDT Thursday, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced via Twitter on Saturday. The tweet includes a link to FEMA’s website contains answers to many of the questions that Americans have about the system and the test.
Info on the emergency alert test:
?It is a national test of the same system that pushes the public emergency messages like AMBER alerts
?Presidential Alerts are only for national emergencies
?FEMA & @FCC are testing to ensure that it will work when needed
FREQUENTLY asked questions: https://t.co/Op8T9AEpiF pic.twitter.com/FBC1AF7oHY
— FEMA (@fema) September 15, 2018
For example, the system is referred to as IPAWS (Integrated Public Alert and Warning System), and it consists of two parts: the Wireless emergency alerts (WEA) and Emergency Alert System (EAS).
The WEA test message will be a header with the text “Presidential Alert” and the text that says:
“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless alarm system. No action is required.”
The EAS-section will consist of the following sms-message:
“THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcasters and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission and local authorities to inform you in the event of an emergency. If this is an actual emergency an official message would have followed the alert tone you heard at the beginning of this post. A similar wireless emergency alert test message is sent to all mobile phones in the country. Some mobile phones will receive the message; others do not. No action is required.”
If for some reason the test has been postponed, will be moved to October. 3, the FEMA release said.
The plans for the system were started in a bill signed into law by former President Barack Obama in 2016, Reuters reported.