“This is a test of the Emergency Alert System…”
These words, familiar to most people across the state, are reminders that we live in a world where disasters can strike with little or no warning, so it is vital to get emergency information to the public as quickly as possible. That was why the Emergency Alert System was devised.
While tests of the EAS are usually conducted on a weekly and monthly schedule that suits each station best, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 1 p.m. CST, radio stations, local television stations, wireline video services, cable and satellite providers in Kansas will join other broadcasters across the entire nation in a first-ever simultaneous nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System.
The test may take up to three and a half minutes, at which time the public will hear a message indicating “This is a test.” The audio message will be the same for radio and television. However, the video message may not indicate “This is a test.”
The nationwide test will be conducted jointly by the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Federal Communications Commission and National Weather Service. These agencies selected Nov. 9 because it is near the end of hurricane season and before the severe winter weather season begins. The time was selected to occur during working hours in time zones across the nation, minimizing disruption by avoiding traffic rush hours.
The test will be conducted through broadcast media only — it will not include NOAA weather radios, mobile devices or outdoor warning sirens.
As the federal, state, tribal, territorial and local governments prepare for and test their capabilities, this event serves as a reminder that everyone should establish an emergency preparedness kit and emergency plan for themselves, their families, communities, and businesses. Visit www.ksready.gov for more information about how to prepare for and stay informed about what to do in the event of an actual emergency, and for information on the Nov. 9th EAS nationwide test.