First Nationwide Test of the Emergency Alert System

Test to Take Place Nov. 9 at 1 p.m. CST


WASHINGTON – Senators John Hoeven and Kent Conrad and Representative Rick Berg announced today that on Nov. 9 at 1 p.m. Central Standard Time (CST) the federal government will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System. The test will last up to three-and-a-half minutes.  During this period, regularly scheduled television, radio, cable and satellite shows will be interrupted as the system is being tested. The delegation wants to ensure that all North Dakotans are aware that this event will be just a test, and not a real emergency alert, and know what to expect.

“This test of the Emergency Alert System not only helps emergency response officials to assess the effectiveness of their program, but it also reminds all of us to plan for emergencies in our own homes and communities. Preparedness makes a world of difference when there are only moments to respond to an emergency situation,” the delegation said in a joint statement.

The test is being conducted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as part of their ongoing efforts to keep the nation safe during emergencies and strengthen our resilience against all hazards.

The national Emergency Alert System is an alert and warning system that can be activated in the event of an emergency to provide information to the American public. NOAA’s National Weather Service, governors, and state and local emergency authorities also use parts of the system to issue more localized emergency alerts. The Nov. 9 test is an important exercise in ensuring that the system is effective in communicating critical information to the public in the event of a real national emergency.  

The delegation, along with FEMA, encourages the public to use the Nov. 9 test as a reminder that everyone should establish an emergency preparedness kit and emergency plan for themselves, their families, communities and businesses.  Visit www.Ready.gov for more information about how to prepare for and stay informed about what to do in the event of an actual emergency.