FEMA and FCC Plan Nationwide Emergency Alert Test for Aug. 11


WASHINGTON – FEMA, in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission, will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) this summer.

The national test will consist of two portions, testing WEA and EAS capabilities. Both tests will begin at 2:20 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Aug. 11. 

The Wireless Emergency Alert portion of the test will be directed only to consumer cell phones where the subscriber has opted-in to receive test messages. This will be the second nationwide WEA test, but the first nationwide WEA test on a consumer opt-in basis. The test message will display in either English or in Spanish, depending on the language settings of the wireless handset.

The Emergency Alert System portion of the test will be sent to radios and televisions. This will be the sixth nationwide EAS test.

FEMA and the FCC are coordinating with EAS participants, wireless providers, emergency managers and other stakeholders in preparation for this national test to minimize confusion and to maximize the public safety value of the 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.

 Major information about the test includes:

  • The purpose of the Aug. 11 test is to ensure that the EAS and WEA systems continue to be effective means of warning the public about emergencies, particularly those on the national level. Periodic testing of public alert and warning systems helps to assess the operational readiness of alerting infrastructure and to identify any needed technological and administrative improvements.
  • The WEA portion of the test will be initiated using FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS), a centralized internet-based system administered by FEMA that enables authorities to send authenticated emergency messages to the public through multiple communications networks. The WEA test will be administered via a code that alerts only phones that have opted in to receive WEA test messages. The EAS portion of the test will be initiated using FEMA-designated Primary Entry Point stations.
  • In case the Aug. 11 test is canceled due to widespread severe weather or other significant events, a back-up testing date is scheduled for Aug. 25.

Anyone who has opted in to receive test messages on their wireless phone will receive the message only once. The following can be expected from the nationwide test:

  • Beginning at 2:20 p.m. ET, cell towers will broadcast the test for approximately 30 minutes. During this time, WEA-compatible wireless phones where the subscriber has opted-in to receive test messages, that are switched on, within range of an active cell tower and whose wireless provider participates in WEA, should be capable of receiving the test message. Wireless phones should receive the message only once.
  • For consumers who have opted in to receive WEA test messages, the message that appears on their phones will read: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”
  • Opt-in phones with the main menu set to Spanish will display: “ESTA ES UNA PRUEBA del Sistema Nacional de Alerta de Emergencia. No se necesita acción.”
  • Launched in 2012, WEA is a tool for authorized government agencies to reach the American public during times of national emergency. It is used locally to warn the public about dangerous weather, missing children, and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones.
  • Alerts are created and sent by authorized federal, state, local, tribal and territorial government agencies through IPAWS to participating wireless providers, which deliver the alerts to compatible handsets in geo-targeted areas.
  • To help ensure that these alerts are accessible to the entire public, including people with disabilities, the alerts are accompanied by a unique tone and vibration. The test handling code will allow FEMA to test this capability while limiting test messages to those phones that have opted in to receive test messages.
  • The EAS portion of the test is scheduled to last approximately one minute and will be conducted with the participation of radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers and wireline video providers (EAS participants).

Other important information about the EAS test:

  • The test message will be similar to the regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar. It will state: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcast and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission, and local authorities to keep you informed in the event of an emergency. If this had been an actual emergency an official message would have followed the tone alert you heard at the start of this message. No action is required.”
  • Emergency alerts are created and sent by authorized federal, state, local, tribal and territorial government agencies. EAS participants receive the alerts through IPAWS or through local “over-the-air” monitoring sources. EAS participants then disseminate the emergency alerts to affected communities


Background: In 2007, FEMA began modernizing the nation’s public alert and warning system by integrating new technologies into the existing alert systems. The new system, known as the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) became operational in 2011. Today, IPAWS supports nearly 1,600 state, local, tribal, territorial and federal users through a standardized message format. IPAWS enables public safety alerting authorities such as emergency managers, police, and fire departments to send the same alert and warning message over multiple communication pathways at the same time to citizens in harm’s way, helping to save lives. For more information on FEMA’s IPAWS, go to www.fema.gov/ipaws. For more preparedness information, go to www.ready.gov.


4 thoughts on “FEMA and FCC Plan Nationwide Emergency Alert Test for Aug. 11

  1. I’m wrapping my sh*t in aluminum foil, just to be sure. 😉
    FEMA already warned us about zombies, this might be the switch-on from the cell towers to the graphene injected lab rats.
    That is 11:20 am PDT.
    Don’t hafta say fuh!

  2. Here is something i received posted in a group on Messenger, all local freedom loving folks; it seems to go along with this, third party, unsubstantiated, but none the less, here it is for consumption: I really wish they would try it….! been itching for a good fight…!

    From Corine:
    My Aunty (Hawaiian elder/healer) called me in a panic at 11pm. Says this is NOT a drill, but is the REAL THING. Her son is very high up in the military. He does NOT joke. Says they’re shutting EVERYTHING down from August 11th-26th. Phones, gas, banks, etc, etc. EVERYTHING!! In order to force people to get the you know what out of fear & chaos. She says get what we need NOW because there won’t be any services for at least 2 weeks. Only 911 will be available, and that will be completely backed up with people losing their shit. She’s been on the phone trying to warn people all night since she got the call after her son’s briefing.

    From Michele:
    She just might be right. I just talk to my friend in the military as well. She said she’s been hearing lots of stuff and she heard tomorrow might be the day. She said just hunker down have supplies it’s gonna be OK. Might be no longer than two weeks if that. Stay calm. We’ve all got this we’re all going through it together. It’s going to be OK.

    1. If they tried this , because of who I am.. i would completely go against the grain , Im not going to be swayed or forced .Full Stop.
      Im sure Im not alone , It would be stackin time

      guess we will just see the level of their stupidity

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *