FEMA will conduct the first ever test of the Presidential Emergency Alert System at 2 PM on Wednesday, November 9th.
According to the FCC, the warning system “requires broadcasters, cable television systems, wireless cable systems, satellite digital audio radio service providers, and direct broadcast satellite providers to provide the communications capability to the President to address the American public during a national emergency.”
The system seems like a good idea, but the test has already caused something of a panic.
Originally, the test was supposed to last for 3 minutes, but there has been some concern that many people may not be aware that it is just a test. This issue arose from an announcement that was made by FEMA, which states:
The audio message will be the same for all EAS Participants; however, due to limitations in the EAS, the video test message scroll may not be the same or indicate that “This is a test.” This is due to the use of a “live” national code – the same code that would be used in an actual emergency. In addition, the background image that appears on video screens during an alert may indicate that “This is a test,” but in some instances there might not be an image at all.
Due to the lack of clarity in the images, and the length of the test, it was feared that many would think there was actually an actual national emergency taking place.
The test has now been shortened to just 30 seconds.
Tagged: best laid planplans, emergency, fema, president
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