Why Everyone’s Phone Will 'Go Off' at 2:20 pm ET on Oct. 4, 2023
Don't panic - it's just a FEMA drill
If you hear a screeching alert go off on your cell phone – and everyone else's cell phone – this Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2023 at 2:20 pm ET, don't panic.
The federal government said it will conduct on Wednesday afternoon a nationwide test of its Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA). The EAS portion of the test will send an emergency alert to all radios and televisions, while the WEA portion of the test will direct alerts to all consumer cell phones.
"The purpose of the Oct. 4 test is to ensure that the systems continue to be effective means of warning the public about emergencies, particularly those on the national level," said the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is conducting the test in coordination with the Federal Communication Commission, in a statement.
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