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Here is why you (and everybody around you) will get a freaky ‘Presidential Alert’ at 11:18 AM

(Image: FEMA)

Wednesday at 11:20 AM 11:18 AM Seattle time, phones across the United States will buzz with a text message likely to creep you out.

For one, it will be a “Presidential Alert.” Yikes.

For two, the message is a test of the nation’s Emergency Alert System and Wireless Emergency Alerts, messaging systems deployed to warn citizens of things like “dangerous weather, missing children, and other critical situations” like Armageddon and End Times.

Phones will sound the same disturbing tone that accompanies Amber Alerts. The test message will have a header that reads “Presidential Alert” and text that says: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”

“Users cannot opt out of receiving the WEA test,” FEMA reminds.

The October 3rd test is part of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month. The county also offers local emergency messages by cell phone, landline, and email via ALERT King County at kingcounty.gov/ALERTKingCounty. You can sign up for City of Seattle alerts at alert.seattle.gov.

As for alerts that would also be really useful, our region still doesn’t have an early earthquake warning system like Japan, Mexico, or India.

 

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Jim98122x
Jim98122x
2 years ago

God that was weird. I read this article 15 seconds before the alert. At least I had time to suppress my gag response.

offgrid
offgrid
2 years ago

i never got the text, nice

Kali
Kali
2 years ago

If you have enough advance notice, you can turn off your phone/smartwatch prior to the alert. The way the system is configured currently, FEMA will continue to try to deliver the message for 30 minutes past send time and then give up.

So if you turn off your phone and keep it off until 30 minutes past sending, you don’t get that horrific asshole’s “alert” on your phone.