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Media Advisory

First Live Regional Test of Geographically-Targeted Wireless Emergency Alerts System

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Thursday, April 5, 10 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Taking Place Simultaneously in 20 Jurisdictions
throughout the National Capital Region

Montgomery County emergency management and public safety officials join the efforts of those agencies throughout the Washington Metropolitan-area (National Capital Region) to ask assistance from our regional media outlets for a final informational push about the first live regional test of the national geographically-based Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) system. Test expected to reach 5.2 million people in our area.

WEA was developed by the Federal Communications Division in 2012. Since that time, 33,000 WEA messages have been sent across the country. However, many people in our region have never received one.

When a WEA message is issued, WEA-enabled cell phones and other mobile devices vibrate and produce a loud audio warning signal. During this test, the vibration and audio alert will be repeated twice. Then a text-like message will be received: “A test of (name of local jurisdiction) Wireless Emergency Alerts system. No action required.” Individuals traveling between participating jurisdictions should get a test message from each jurisdiction they travel through between 10 and 11 a.m.

The media is encouraged to make announcements regarding the regional test in news articles, media websites, twitter feeds and news programs leading up to the commencement of the test at 10 a.m. tomorrow, April 5. Any posted announcements can be removed as of 11 a.m. on April 5.

Additional information is available at:

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Release ID: 18-151
Media Contact: Lucille Baur 240-876-5530