A national alert test for both WEA (Wireless Emergency Alert) and EAS (Emergency Alert System) capabilities will take place on September 2oth at 2:18 EDT. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will issue a Na- tionwide Wireless Emergency Alert testing the Presidential WEA capabilities. The test message will be available to all compatible cell phones. Please note, some older cell phones may not receive the test message. The nationwide WEA test will be followed by a nationwide EAS test approximately 2 minutes after the WEA is issued.

WHEN: Thursday, Sept. 20 at 2:18 pm. EDT for Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA)

Thursday, Sept. 20 at 2:20 pm. EDT for Emergency Alert Systems (EAS) 

More information:

• The alert title will be ”Pres- idential Alert”

• The use of the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) will be utilized for both tests (WEA and EAS).

• The test will happen during the school day, so FEMA/FCC have teamed up with the Department of Education to make sure all educators will be aware of the test.

• An increase amount of sensitivity for preparedness and education is in current planning phases for the tests due to it being a Presidential Alert. This also may be the rst time cell phone users will receive an alert. FEMA looks to have edu- cational messages sent out publicly about a week prior to the test.

• The times and order of the tests are on purpose so that once someone sees the ‘THIS IS A TEST’ alert on their phone, they may go to a radio or television and can see the same alert that will emphasize ‘THIS IS A TEST’.

• The goal is to have a unified voice in the test messaging and education to lessen the potential for public panic.

Your Role

• This is a national test being conducted by FEMA. You will not be required to rebroadcast any messages. The messages should route through the various systems automatically.

• Be informed about the test. • Spread the word to local public safety, local 911 centers, local schools, and local media about the national test. More information can be found here: https://www.fema.gov/news- release/2018/07/23/nation- wide-test-emergency-alert- system-be-conducted-septem- ber-20-2018

• If you have any questions regarding EAS or notice any problems please send an email to the State Public Alert and Warning officer, Joe Galvin at joe.galvin@illinois.gov. IEMA will be keeping a log of activities and will report back our collective findings to FEMA.

Thank you for your attention to this important national matter.


William Robertson, Director, Illinois Emergency Management Agency