Phones across the U.S. will sound an alarm on October 4

  1. Overview: On October 4, phones, TVs, and radios across the U.S. will sound an emergency alarm. This is a scheduled test by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to assess the government’s mass communication capabilities.
  2. What to Expect: When activated at 2:20pm ET, phones will emit a unique tone and vibration. A message will display, stating: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.” Depending on phone settings, the message will appear in English or Spanish.
  3. TV and Radio Broadcast: The alert will last roughly one minute on TV and radio. Broadcasts will carry the message: “This is a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System, issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, covering the United States from 14:20 to 14:50 hours ET. This is only a test. No action is required by the public.”
  4. Eligibility: Phones compatible with Wireless Emergency Alerts, switched on, within cell tower range, and connected to a participating provider should receive the message.
  5. Back-Up Date: If issues arise, such as severe weather, FEMA has a secondary test date set for October 11.