Nationwide alert systems test rescheduled due to Hurricane Florence

A nationwide test of emergency alert systems that was scheduled for today has been postponed for about two weeks. Emergency management officials say that’s to avoid any confusion with the response to Hurricane Florence on the East Coast.

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This test is unique in that it will be the first to send alerts to nearly every cellphone in the country. It will also include the usual broadcast alerts commonly heard on radio and seen on TV.

The Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management says the test has been rescheduled to Wednesday, October 3rd.

The test is aimed at improving the ways Alaskans are warned about disasters and identifying any flaws in that complicated system. And, specific to Alaska, it also follows a January earthquake in the Gulf of Alaska and subsequent fears of a tsunami that exposed problems in how alerts messages are distributed.

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Casey Grove is host of Alaska News Nightly and a general assignment reporter at Alaska Public Media. cgrove [at] alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.550.8446 | About Casey