The Federal Emergency Management Agency will this week take a look at a brand new “presidential alert” system that may permit the president to ship a message to each cellphone within the US.
The alert is the primary nationwide take a look at of the presidential alert take a look at, FEMA stated in an advisory, which permits the president to handle the nation within the occasion of a nationwide emergency.
Using the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system, anybody with cell service ought to obtain the message to their cellphone.
“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed,” the message will learn, as a result of be despatched out on Thursday at 2:18pm ET.
Minutes later, the Emergency Alert System (EAS) will broadcast the same take a look at message over tv, radio, and wireline video providers.
Emergency alerts aren’t new and warning methods have lengthy been used — and examined — within the US to alert residents of native and state incidents, like AMBER alerts for lacking kids and extreme climate occasions that will lead to hazard to or lack of life.
But presidential alerts have but to be examined. Unlike different alerts, residents won’t be allowed to choose out of presidential alerts.
Allowing the president to ship nationwide alerts was included within the passing of the WARN Act in 2006 under the Bush administration, making a state-of-the-art emergency alert system that will substitute an growing old infrastructure. As alarming as these alerts can (and are designed to) be, the system goals to modernize the alerts system for a inhabitants more and more shifting away from televisions and in direction of cellular know-how.
These presidential alerts are solely on the discretion of the president and will be despatched for any purpose, however specialists have shown little concern that the system could also be abused.
But the system isn’t good. Earlier this 12 months, panic spread on Hawaii after an misguided alert went out to residents warning of a “ballistic missile thread inbound.” The message stated, “this is not a drill.” The false warning was amid the peak of tensions between the US and North Korea, which on the time was commonly testing its ballistic missiles as a part of its nuclear weapons program.
More than 100 carriers will take part within the take a look at, FEMA stated.