Nov 8, 2011
Emergency Alert System Test on Wednesday.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on Wednesday, November 9 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern) and may last up to three and a half minutes. On November 9, the public will hear a message indicating that "This is a test." The audio message will be the same for both radio and television. A Nationwide EAS Test will help the federal agencies and EAS participants determine the reliability of the system and its effectiveness in notifying the public of emergencies and potential dangers nationally and regionally.
The public is used to hearing these tests on radio and television, but not for the expected three and a half minutes. This message is to be broadcast additionally on cable and satellite television as well as satellite radio, which in the past, have not fully participated. This message will be on every channel and every station that some one could be expected to be listening to. The EAS participants will then report back to FEMA on the outcome of forwarding this message through their respective systems.
This notice is being sent, as will other public service announcements to come from the Federal government, to inform you of this test and to pass this information on to your employees and/or citizens where possible. Our main concern is people not being aware of this test and flooding 911 centers with questions about a national emergency. This test could be postponed if conditions warrant, such as a real emergency or severe weather conditions so as not to confuse the public.