This is Only a Test: National Emergency Alert System Drill

A nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System will help ensure the system works when really needed.

The first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System- those beeping and buzzing noises that interrupt radio and television on occasion- is being conducted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 11 a.m. Pacific time.

"The EAS test plays a key role in ensuring the nation is prepared for any type of hazard, and that the U.S. public can receive critical and vital information should it ever be needed," according to FEMA.

The test is scheduled to last 30 seconds and be broadcast on television and radio stations in all 50 states and territories. As with the local emergency alert tests, an audio message will interrupt the broadcast, indicate that "this is a test," a series of alert noises will air and normal programming will continue.

FEMA is conducting the test to ensure that a coordinated national EAS alert will work and to work to "identify any changes and improvements needed to modernize this system and make it fully accessible."

FEMA asks that everyone spread the word to your neighbors, co-workers, friends and family, so that no one is caught off-guard.

Find more information online at: www.fema.gov/eastest

Freddie Freeloader November 09, 2011 at 05:34 AM
This is a test: Can the Federal Government take over the air waves. If so, then they can decide which programs and commentators are left on the air. All disagreement with Government policy can be squashed.
Doug Curlee November 09, 2011 at 04:13 PM
freddie..no, actually the government cannot "take over the airwaves"..thewy can raise heel, and threaten to take away your license to broadcast, but there is no magic switch the government can throw to take over your broadcast signal.. you'd be amazed how often that question arises in television newsrooms all over the country..every time we did a story about something that was bound to raise the hackles of the government, we'd think, "boy, i bet the government wishes it could stop this story".. but it can't... doug
Jan Clak November 09, 2011 at 07:32 PM
Well, it FAILED! I was aware that this Emergency Alert test was going happen. I have COX for my cable provider. At 11:00 a.m. I was watching CNN and the only thing that happened was the television went blank and a few seconds later came back on the station for C-SPAN where they were showing an interview for someone running for office back East. What happened? Just proves we have to depend on ourselves.
Doug Curlee November 09, 2011 at 09:10 PM
dunno what you were watching.. i'm on cox, too, and it came through right on schedule..was actually no different than the weekly such alerts every broadcast entity in america gets, and has to log in for the FCC.. doug
Jan Clak November 09, 2011 at 11:01 PM
Thanks Doug for letting me know that you saw it. As I said, I was watching Brooke Baldwin on CNN, and she was talking about the "historic moment" that was about to take place right after her show ended. The next show started and they were talking about the stock market going down today. The CNN clock showed 11:03 a.m when my TV's screen went blank and there was no sound. In few seconds it came back up but it was on C-SPAN. I expected the test would not look or sound any different than the usual emergency broadcast, but all I saw was a blank screen. I know my eyes are in good shape as I had cataract surgery last month and once again, without glasses, I can actually read the small print on the TV. LOL! Maybe they need to go back to the days of the air raid sirens.


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