'Presidential Alert' Test on Cell Phones Set for Wednesday

Most US cell phones to receive 'Presidential Alert' text on Wednesday

The test was originally scheduled for September 20 but was postponed due to Hurricane Florence recovery efforts.

The WEA is in addition to the Emergency Alert System, or EAS, which has been utilized for decades via broacast outlets. WEA allows most customers to receive geo-targeted alerts of imminent threats to safety in their area. The tone is one you should be familiar with. Even if you disable Amber Alerts you'll still get the test message.

The test comes in two different formats: the Wireless Emergency Alert and the Emergency Alert System. "No action is needed".

The Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) system proper was created in 2012, but it's actually been around longer than that.

No can do. You'll likely receive the message automatically, unless your phone is turned off, you're not close enough to a cell tower or your wireless provider doesn't participate in WEA. It's also possible that if you leave your phone off or have a call that lasts for more than 30 minutes, you might not receive the alert at all.

President Donald Trump will send every American a text at 2:18 p.m. EDT on October 3. Why?

The Wireless Emergency Alert system is used to notify Americans about risky weather from the National Weather Service, AMBER Alerts for missing children, and other urgent situations from federal, state and local authorities. It will be accompanied by a national alert tone.

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Wireless Emergency Alerts are sent to people's cell phones across the country during certain "critical situations", including unsafe weather events and times when there are missing children.

Asked about the possibility that the government's messages could pour into people's phones like Trump's tweets, FEMA official Antwane Johnson said that wouldn't happen. "No action is required".

When will it be sent?

Why is it being sent?

That test will assess the effectiveness of sending out "a national message and determine whether improvements are needed".

It's called the "presidential alert", but the president doesn't actually write it. The alert would be used in the event of a major nationwide emergency.

When will I get the alert?

You can, however, turn off AMBER alerts and severe weather alerts.

Despite the name, "the president will not originate this alert, say, from his mobile device", the official said.

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