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Phones across the U.S. will sound an alarm on October 4

Emily Brown

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| Last updated 

Phones across the U.S. will sound an alarm on October 4

Featured Image Credit: Getty stock

You might want to set a reminder for 4 October, because that's the day phones across the country will ring out with an alarm that you won't have set yourself.

Of course, you don't have to set a reminder - you could just forget all about it and let the alarm literally alarm you when it rings out.

But do you really want to be that person in the movie theatre, in church or in your school library who fumbles around chaotically trying to silence the beeping?

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The alarm will feature on all phones. Credit: Miriam Alonso/Pexels
The alarm will feature on all phones. Credit: Miriam Alonso/Pexels

Americans will have to plan ahead if they don't want their phone to disturb them on 4 October, because that's the day the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) plans to conduct a statewide test to determine just how effective the government's mass communication options really are.

As well as phones, TVs and radios will sound with the alarm as they mimic what might happen in the event of an emergency - but remember, it's just a test.

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Text should appear on your phone when the alarm goes off to remind you that it's nothing to worry about, with a message reading: "THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”

Conducted in conjunction with the Federal Communications Commission, the test will be split into two portions; one focused on Wireless Emergency Alerts, and the second to test the Emergency Alert System.

When the alarm sounds at 2:20pm ET, phones will come alive with a unique tone and vibration to make sure the message is accessible to everyone, including people with disabilities.

The message will display in either English or Spanish depending on the language settings on the cell phone.

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The alarm will sound in the middle of the day. Credit: Ketut Subiyanto/Pexels
The alarm will sound in the middle of the day. Credit: Ketut Subiyanto/Pexels

FEMA states that Wireless Emergency Alerts-compatible wireless phones which 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.

On televisions and radios, the test will last approximately one minute and will affect radio and television broadcast stations, cable systems, satellite radio and other television and video providers.

The message broadcast on TV and radio will read: "This is a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System, issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, covering the United States from 14:20 to 14:50 hours ET. This is only a test. No action is required by the public."

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It's currently set to be all systems go on 4 October, but the Federal Emergency Management Agency has also implemented a back-up testing date on 11 October in case severe weather or another event causes a disruption.

Topics: News, Technology, US News, Weather, Phones

Emily Brown
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