On September 20, 2018 beginning at 10:18am, a national test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system will be conducted. This test is an important step to ensure that alert and warning systems work properly in the event of large-scale emergency. Residents may see several notices from the test on that day, all of which will indicate that the transmission is a test message.
Local broadcasters will air EAS messages similar to regularly scheduled tests, which include an audible message that is expected to last about one minute and can be seen or heard on local television and radio stations.
In addition to the tests aired on broadcasters, the WEA system will be tested for the first time at a national level. This system can send urgent messages to cell phones by broadcasting from active cell towers, and will appear as a notification on cellular phones. The notification will appear as a Presidential Alert and will indicate that the message is a test.To receive the WEA message, residents must have a compatible device, be within range of an active tower, and use a wireless carrier that participates in the WEA system. Residents are encouraged to check with their wireless carrier to determine if they will be able to receive alerts via this system.
The Ketchikan AK Community Notification System (also known as Nixle) is a local warning system administered by the City of Ketchikan and Ketchikan Gateway Borough and is not being tested with the EAS and WEA system. To receive alerts on your wireless phone, a one-time registration is required. All Ketchikan residents are encouraged to register for alerts by texting “99901” to 888777.