Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

US 'Presidential' Nationwide Emergency Alert System Tested

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Lori Graves | 05 October, 2018, 04:46

The first portion of the test begins at 1:18 p.m.

The EAS test will be sent at 2:20 p.m. After filling in the message form, two other FEMA officials are asked to sign off on the alert - a system created to prevent false alarms, like the incorrect alert of an incoming missile that roused and terrified people in Hawaii earlier this year. "No action is needed", the message read.

The system is also used for lower-level alerts such as local weather warnings and AMBER Alerts, which are used to alert the public to missing children.

FEMA said the test was planned for September 20 but was postponed by the need to respond to Hurricane Florence.

But some people said they didn't know the test was going to happen.

Today, President Donald Trump will now send you a text message, whether you like it or not.

A trio of New Yorkers filed a lawsuit in federal court last month to halt the nationwide test.

Comic Kathy Griffin, a longtime Trump critic, used her Twitter account to show a phony Presidential Alert reading: "FAILED COMIC KATHY GRIFFIN IS TRYING TO DESTROY A GREAT MAN, BRETT KAVANAUGH!"

And no, you can't turn off the Presidential Alert. A wireless provider must also be participating in the WEA in order to receive the test message, Accuweather reported.

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A senior FEMA official said:"You would not have a situation where the president would just wake up one morning and attempt to send a personal message". "The president would not originate this alert from his mobile device".

FEMA officials have said the Hawaii incident played no role in the scheduling of Wednesday's test.

A tone will sound, mirroring previous alerts you may have received, like Amber Alerts or flood watch warnings.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was testing the system to alert people about national emergencies for the first time.

Older Americans will remember emergency alerts being around for decades on broadcast TV and radio.

Congress has placed limits on when the president can trigger such a warning, saying it must relate to a natural or man-made disaster or public safety threat.

It is not possible to opt out of receiving the presidential messages, which by law are not allowed to be political in any way. Users can opt out of "emergency alerts" which means there's a way out in case they don't want to be notified in case of an emergency (but, it would be surprising if anybody would do that).

"So some people got the presidential alert and some people didn't?"

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