National public alert system will be tested Nov. 27, 2019. (File photo by BLACK PRESS)

Cellphones, radio, TV stations to broadcast emergency alert system test today

OTTAWA — Wireless devices, radio and TV stations will issue emergency messages today, but there isn’t anything to be alarmed about.

The squawky signals from provincial and territorial emergency management systems across the country — except in Nunavut — will be transmitted to test the national public alert system.

The alerts are designed to warn of imminent threats or emergencies, such as floods, tornadoes, fires or Amber Alerts.

Depending on where you live, the tests will be conducted mid-morning or early afternoon.

The emergency alerts have become a familiar sound since the national public alert system was first tested in early 2018, revealing glitches in several provinces.

Since January, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission says 125 emergency messages have been issued, warning Canadians of potentially life-threatening situations.

The CRTC said the emergency alerts have been credited with saving lives.

Some alert recipients, however, have considered them an annoyance, sparking complaints on social media — and even to 911 operators — that the emergency warnings came too late at night or were targeting the wrong geographic area.

The complaints have prompted often heated debates about their necessity in helping to find missing children or to warn of emergencies.

Pelmorex Corp., which operates the system’s technical infrastructure, says the tests are necessary to ensure the system is working properly and to educate Canadians on what the warning signals look and sound like.

To receive alerts, compatible wireless devices must be equipped with the latest operating software. They must also be connected to an LTE network when the alert is issued.

All wireless devices sold by service providers after April 6, 2019 are required to be capable of issuing the public alerts.

Canadians with compatible devices who don’t receive the test are being asked to contact their wireless service provider.

Here is when the test signals are scheduled to be transmitted:

Alberta 1:55 p.m. MST

British-Colombia 1:55 p.m. PST

Manitoba 1:55 p.m. CST

New-Brunswick 10:55 a.m. AST

Newfoundland and Labrador 10:55 a.m. NST

Northwest Territories 9:55 a.m. MST

Nova Scotia 1:55 p.m. AST

Nunavut — No test

Ontario 2:55 p.m. EST

Prince Edward Island 12:55 p.m. AST

Quebec 1:55 p.m. EST

Saskatchewan 1:55 p.m. CST

Yukon 1:55 p.m. PST

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer’s new courthouse on track despite pandemic

Infrastructure Minister Prasad Panda reaffirms commitment to build courthouse

Vulnerable Lacombe resident says COVID-19 ‘extremely scary’

Elderly residents and people with prior conditions at risk for severe cases of COVID-19

Snow expected in Red Deer and other parts of central Alberta Monday

Spring is on hold in central Alberta. Heavy snow fall is on… Continue reading

A message from the Advocate publisher

In good times and bad, The Red Deer Advocate has been here… Continue reading

Alberta doctors send letter asking government to delay health-care restructuring

EDMONTON — Hundreds of Alberta doctors have signed an open letter asking… Continue reading

Alberta Health Services provides COVID-19 prevention tips

Alberta Health Services has a number of recommendations for people amid the… Continue reading

Alberta government website has latest COVID-19 statistics

Red Deer Advocate readers can stay up to date on the COVID-19… Continue reading

Newspapers are safe to touch, World Health Organization confirms

Just make sure to wash your hands, as you would after touching any surface or object

David Marsden: Signs of kindness lift our spirits during COVID-19 pandemic

From teddy bears, to colourful cutouts of hearts, to expressions of support… Continue reading

Central Alberta business sanitizes with bacoban against coronavirus, results to last for over 3 months

An Innisfail brewery is among countless businesses ensuring their premises are sanitized… Continue reading

Delay in tackling COVID-19 adds mightily to death toll

The basic choice all along with COVID-19 has been: do we let… Continue reading

Health care workers should have the protection they need

Hospital staff are now having serious problems getting protective equipment to prevent… Continue reading

Lacombe Police respond to multiple incidents

LPS respond to thefts, outstanding warrants

Most Read