This is the fourth EAS nationwide test and the first national WEA test. The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones.
The EAS test is made available to EAS participants (e.g., radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers) and is scheduled to last approximately one minute. The test message will be similar to regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar.
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 test message will read “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed."
The WEA test will be sent through IPAWS, as part of the nation’s modern alert and warning infrastructure that automatically authenticates alerts. Significant coordination has been conducted with EAS participants, wireless providers, and emergency managers in preparation for this EAS-WEA national test. The test is intended to ensure public safety officials have the methods and systems that will deliver urgent alerts and warnings to the public in times of an emergency or disaster.
More information on IPAWS and Wireless Emergency Alerts is available at www.ready.gov/alerts.