IPAWS National Test of the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) and Emergency Alert System (EAS)

The National EAS and WEA test will be held on Wednesday October 3, 2018, beginning at 2:18 p.m. EDT.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), will conduct a nationwide test of the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) and Emergency Alert System (EAS) on Wednesday October 3, 2018. The WEA portion of the test commences at 2:18 p.m. EDT, and the EAS portion follows at 2:20 p.m. EDT. The test will assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed.

The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones that are connected to wireless providers participating in WEA. This is the fourth EAS nationwide test and the first national WEA test. Previous EAS national tests were conducted in November 2011, September 2016, and September 2017 in collaboration with the FCC, broadcasters, and emergency management officials in recognition of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month.

Cell towers will broadcast the WEA test for approximately 30 minutes beginning at 2:18 p.m. EDT. During this time, WEA compatible cell phones that are switched on, within range of an active cell tower, and whose wireless provider participates in WEA should be capable of receiving the test message. Some cell phones will not receive the test message, and cell phones should only receive the message once. The WEA test message will have a header that reads “Presidential Alert” and text that says:

“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”

The WEA system is used to warn the public about dangerous weather, missing children, and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones. The national test will use the same special tone and vibration as with all WEA messages (i.e. Tornado Warning, AMBER Alert). Users cannot opt out of receiving the WEA test.

The EAS is a national public warning system that provides the President with the communications capability to address the nation during a national emergency. The test is made available to EAS participants (i.e., radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers) and is scheduled to last approximately one minute. The test message will be similar to regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar. The EAS message will include a reference to the WEA test:

“THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcast and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission, and local authorities to keep you informed in the event of an emergency. If this had been an actual emergency an official message would have followed the tone alert you heard at the start of this message. A similar wireless emergency alert test message has been sent to all cell phones nationwide. Some cell phones will receive the message; others will not. No action is required.”

During the test, this is a good opportunity to discuss your emergency preparedness plans with co-workers, family members, students and others who may be with you during the test. Preparedness is everyones responsibility and this is a good time to test your preparedness plans. For more information on disaster preparedness, check out Ready.gov.

Do you have flood insurance?

EMA Followers;

Hurricane Florence, which has battered parts of the East Coast over the past few days, is a reminder of the importance of having flood insurance. Did you know that 80% of households impacted by Hurricane Harvey last year did not have flood insurance?

Although flooding is the most common and costly disaster in the U.S., most homeowners’ and renters’ insurance does not cover flood damage. As part of National Preparedness Month, we wanted to remind you to take a minute to check your insurance coverage. You can learn more about flood insurance here: https://www.floodsmart.gov/.

If you are already covered, make sure you take photos of important documents and personal belongings so you can file a claim quickly in case of a flood. Have you or your family been affected by flooding? If so, please feel free to share some lessons learned as a comment.

Building Your Disaster Supply Kit, 1 Item a Week!

In conjunction with National Preparedness month, we want to promote things you can do at home, work and school to help you be prepared.

Have you ever wanted to build a disaster preparedness kit but after paying your bills, feeding your family and covering day to day expenses, there is just very little left over and no way possible you could buy an entire disaster preparedness kit. Even if you could buy a kit, what needs to be put in your disaster preparedness kit? Well, Mr. B Ready has put together a simple plan to build a disaster preparedness kit 1 piece at a time, and 1 week at a time. Will this kit protect you tomorrow? Certainly not, but we have prioritized the items that belong in the kit and after a period of time, you will have the basic necessities covered in your kit.

Note: Always be sure to write the date on water, food, batteries etc when they are purchased. After your 1st year of building the kit, you will simply be rotating stock that expires going forward. This kit does not include medication that should be the first thing you set aside in your kit.

Week 1 – Purchase a plastic crate for storage

Week 2 – 1 Large Claw Hammer

Week 3 – Duct Tape (4 rolls)

Week 4 – Adjustable Wrench 12″

Week 5 – Flashlight and batteries

Week 6 – 2 gallons of water

Week 7 – 1 plastic jar of Peanut Butter

Week 8 – Protein Bars, Fruit Bars or Dry Cereal / Granola

Week 9 – Fire extinguisher

Week 10 – 1 Can Opener and 1 large box of matches

Week 11 – Canned vegetables (4 cans)

Week 12 – Battery powered radio / Batteries

Week 13 – First Aid kit or supplies

Week 14 – Blankets (1 per every 2 persons in the family)

Week 15 – 2 gallons of water

Week 16 – $25.00 cash in an envelope

Week 17 – Purchase a 2nd plastic crate for storage

Week 18 – Cellular phone charging cord

Week 19 – 1 plastic jar of peanut butter

Week 20 – Box of large plastic trash bags

Week 21 – Mosquito repellant

Week 22 – 2 gallons of water

Week 23 – Additional $25.00 cash in the envelope

Week 24 – Dust masks 2 per person in family

Week 25 – 2 packages of moist sanitation towelettes

Week 26 – 1 bottle of rubbing alcohol or peroxide

Week 27 – Additional first aid supplies

Week 28 – Large package of plastic zip ties

Week 29 – 2 gallons of water

Week 30 – 1 plastic jar of peanut butter

Week 31 – Canned vegetables (4 cans)

Week 32 – More batteries for the flashlight and radio

Week 33 – Another flashlight (make sure to get a flashlight that takes the same size batteries as the one purchased during week 5)

Week 34 – Box of large plastic trash bags

Week 35 – Hard helmet (protective bump cap)

Week 36 – Rain Ponchos (1 for each person in the family)

Week 37 – 1 large plastic tarp

Week 38 – 1 pair of thermal socks for each person in the family

Week 39 – Protein Bars, Fruit Bars or Dry Cereal / Granola

Week 40 – 1 – 5 gallon bucket

Week 41 – 4 rolls of paper towels

Week 42 – 4 rolls of toilet paper

Week 43 – 2 bottles of Hand sanitizers

Week 44 – 1 package of bars of soap

Week 45 – 2 boxes of drier sheets

Week 46 – 1 large plastic tarp

Week 47 – Canned vegetables (4 cans)

Week 48 – 2 gallons of water

Week 49 – More batteries to match the size you need for radio and flashlights

Week 50 – Box of long burning candles

Week 51 – 2 boxes of fire starter blocks

Week 52 – Congratulations, purchase anything you would like to add to your disaster Preparedness kit.