What’s that noise? Why all devices will alert at 1:20 p.m. Wednesday

Published 10:27 am Tuesday, October 3, 2023

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will conduct a nationwide test of the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) on Oct. 4.

The test, set for 1:20 p.m. central time, will target mobile phones, radios, televisions and other devices.

Its purpose is to evaluate the efficiency of the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) and the Emergency Alert System (EAS) in emergency situations. Major U.S. wireless providers will transmit the national test to their subscribers.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

The test will be received by any mobile phone that is on and within range of an active cell tower from a participating provider. The transmission will last for 30 minutes, but each phone will only receive it once.

The test will use Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA), radio and television via the Emergency Alert System (EAS). The national test is an important measure to confirm the public alert warning system works properly and can inform the public during a national emergency.

If the test cannot be conducted on the scheduled date, it will be moved to Oct. 11. The test is part of FEMA’s ongoing efforts to enhance the nation’s preparedness and resilience for emergencies.