FEMA and the FCC have set the date for the next national Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) test as October 4, 2023 at approximately 2:20 pm. ET, with a backup date of October 11, 2023.
The national EAS test will test the delivery of EAS messages through internet-based Common Alerting Protocol (CAP). Radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers are required to participate. The test message will state: “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.”
The WEA test will be sent to all consumer cell phones. The WEA test will use the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS). The message will read “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed” or its Spanish translation, depending on the language settings of the phone.
All EAS participants (including broadcasters) must file the required forms in the EAS Test Reporting System (ETRS):
In preparation for the test, EAS participants should make sure their EAS equipment is up to date with the latest software. A copy of the EAS Operating Handbook should be available at EAS equipment locations.
If you have questions about the nationwide EAS/WEA test or the required ETRS filings, please contact an attorney in our Media practice group.