AP/Susan Walsh

First 'presidential alert' test to go out Wednesday

October 03, 2018 - 8:30 am
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WASHINGTON (1010 WINS) – Don’t be alarmed if you get a text from President Donald Trump.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will be conducting tests for its Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on Wednesday.

The message is scheduled to be the first trial of the "Presidential Alert" system, a new way to notify Americans across the country of emergencies.

In the event of a national emergency or major weather event, a text message will be sent out to cell phones around the country. The message will show up as a “Presidential Alert” for some warnings.

The public warning will give the President “communications capability to address the nation during a national emergency.”

The alert will use the same buzzing and ringing sound for an Amber Alert or Extreme Weather Warning.

The only way to avoid the "Presidential Alert" is to have your phone switched off, not be within range of an active cell tower, or use a wireless provider not participating in the WEA.

According to FEMA, “the President has sole responsibility for determining when the national-level EAS will be activated.”

The first test of the new alerts will take place on Oct. 3 at 2:18 p.m.