FEMA Schedules Nationwide Emergency Alert System Test, 9 Nov 2011, 9-2 EDT

Received from:  FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) <fema@service.govdelivery.com>



As part of our larger efforts to strengthen our nation’s preparedness and resiliency, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will conduct the first nation-wide test of the Emergency Alert System on November 9th, at 2 p.m. eastern standard time. Testing the Emergency Alert System plays a key role in evaluating and improving the systems we need in place to ensure our nation is prepared for all hazards and that people within its borders are able to receive critical and vital information through the system, should it ever be needed. It’s important to keep in mind that this is not a pass or fail test of the Emergency Alert System, but an opportunity to improve the system on a national level.  Below we have provided a template for both a press release and/or a newsletter that you can use in your organizations to help inform.  For additional information and FAQ’s, please visit the FCC Web Site.  If you have additional FEMA-Private-Sector-Specific questions, please contact our Private Sector Division Office at: FEMA-Private-Sector@dhs.gov.




Test to Take Place November 9 at 2 p.m. EDT

[you can use this content to place publish a release about the test]

WASHINGTON, D.C. -   Today, [organization] announced that on November 9 at 2:00 p.m. eastern standard time, the federal government will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS).  The test will last up to three and a half minutes. During this period, regularly scheduled television, radio, cable, and satellite shows will be interrupted as the system is being tested.   [Organization] would like to ensure that [all of their customers, members] and the larger public are aware that this event will be just a test, and not a real emergency alert.  

Insert quote from organizational representative about why they feel this test is important for their audience]

The test is being conducted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), as part of their ongoing efforts to keep the nation safe during emergencies and strengthen our resilience against all hazards.

The national Emergency Alert System is an alert and warning system that can be activated by the president, if needed, to provide information to the American public during emergencies.  NOAA's National Weather Service, governors, and state and local emergency authorities also use parts of the system to issue more localized emergency alerts. The test is an important exercise in ensuring that the system is effective in communicating critical information to the public in the event of a real national emergency.  

Similar to emergency alert system tests that are already conducted frequently on the local level, the nationwide test will involve television and radio stations across the United States, including Alaska, Hawaii, and the territories of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa.

Under the FCC's rules, radio and television broadcasters, cable operators, satellite digital audio radio service providers, direct broadcast satellite service providers and wireline video service providers are required to receive and transmit presidential EAS messages to the public. A national test will help federal partners and EAS participants determine the reliability of the system, as well as its effectiveness in notifying the public of emergencies and potential dangers both nationally and regionally.  The test will also provide the FCC and FEMA a chance to identify improvements that need to be made to build a modernized and fully accessible Emergency Alert System. 

[Organization], along with FEMA, encourages the public to use this event as a reminder that everyone should establish an emergency preparedness kit and emergency plan for themselves, their families, communities, and businesses.  Visit www.Ready.gov for more information about how to prepare for and stay informed about what to do in the event of an actual emergency.



[you can use this content to place information on your websites or to create newsletters about the test]


As part of their ongoing efforts to keep our country and communities safe during emergencies, the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Emergency Management Agency will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS). The EAS test plays a key role in ensuring the nation is prepared for all hazards, and that the U.S. public can receive critical and vital information, should it ever be needed.  The first nationwide test will be conducted Wednesday, November 9 at 2 p.m. EDT.  This test may last up to three and a half minutes, and will be transmitted via television and radio stations within the U.S., including Alaska, Hawaii, the territories of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and American Samoa. Similar to local emergency alert system tests, an audio message will interrupt television and radio programming indicating: “This is a test.” When the test is over, regular programming will resume.  For more information about the nationwide Emergency Alert System test, please visit www.FEMA.gov  and www.FCC.gov.   On November 9 at 2 p.m. EDT, please remember: Don’t stress; it’s only a test.



FEMA Press Release – http://www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=55722


FEMA Blog – http://blog.fema.gov/2011/10/emergency-alert-system-test-one-month....


FCC Website – http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/emergency-alert-system-nationwide-test


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