Get ready for a big alarm Wednesday at 11:00

From the Mayor’s office:

Nationwide Emergency Alert System Test

When: Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at 11:00 AM, approximately 30 seconds

The first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) is scheduled for Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at 11:00 am PST. The test will interrupt regularly scheduled television, radio, cable, and satellite programming, lasting approximately 30 seconds. It will include an audio message stating “this is a test,” which will be the same for both radio and television.

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, prepared, and resilient during emergencies and hazards.

We would like to share this announcement so that you can inform your colleagues, neighbors, family, and friends. Additionally, this is a good opportunity to put together an emergency/disaster plan or revisit your existing plans. AlertSF is a free text and email emergency alert system and is an important step to having a comprehensive emergency/disaster preparedness plan. Sign up today!

Due to the challenges listed below, certain individuals may mistake this test for an actual emergency. Therefore, we strongly encourage you to help spread the word about this planned EAS Test.
Due to variations in equipment at each station, it is possible that the visual/text message on the television screen may not explicitly indicate that “this is a test.”
It is unclear if the messages will be translated into languages other than English, as translation is left up to each specific station.
If someone is hearing impaired or does not understand English, they could mistake the test as an actual emergency situation. However, broadcasters have been encouraged to run PSAs informing the public of the test.
For more information and a list of FAQs about the November 9, 2011 test, please visit here.

For more information on preparing your workplace and employees, visit the American Red Cross or 72hours.org.

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