Hurricane Florence has an unintended impact this week — a planned, nationwide emergency alert system test is being postponed to not confuse people during ongoing response efforts in the Carolinas.
Thursday was supposed to be the day for a test of the nationwide Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. This includes the Emergency Alert System, which makes those test tones you hear periodically on TV and radio stations — including KDLL, and Wireless Emergency Alerts, which sends alert messages to cell phones.
The test has been rescheduled for Oct. 3, with the wireless alert being sent to cell phones at 2:18 p.m. Eastern Time — which is 10:18 a.m. Alaska time — and the broadcast test airing at 2:20 p.m. Eastern Time, or 10:20 a.m. in Alaska.
Cell towers will broadcast the test for approximately 30 minutes. In that time, cell phones that are compatible with the alert system, are switched on, are in range of an active cell tower and whose wireless provider participates in the alert system should receive a test message. You should only get one message.
For more information on the nationwide test, go to fema.gov/emergency-alert-test. And while you’re feeling safety conscious, the Kenai Peninsula Borough has an alert system, as well. You can register your phone through KPB Alerts to receive a call and/or text message in the event of a tsunami, flooding, wildfire or another local emergency. For more information and to sign up, visit alerts.kpb.us.