Wireless Emergency Alert information


FEMA and Ad Council Help Americans Prepare for Severe Weather with Wireless Emergency Alerts

Recent severe weather and the start of the Atlantic hurricane season reinforce the need for Americans to familiarize themselves with the look, sound and authenticity of real-time Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs).

What to expect with the WEAs:

  • WEAs are emergency messages sent by local authorized government authorities through wireless carriers’ networks.
  • The alerts include a special tone and vibration.
  • The messages are no more than 90 characters and contain the type and time of the alert, any action individuals should take and the issuing agency.
  • Types of alerts include extreme weather such as hurricane, tornado or flash flood warnings; AMBER alerts and alerts issued by the U.S. President.
  • Alerts are broadcast from area cell towers warning everyone in range with a WEA-capable device of a potential emergency situation.
  • You do not need to register to receive WEA notifications. You will automatically receive alerts if you have WEA-capable phone and your wireless carrier participates in the program.

To encourage, educate and empower Americans to identify WEAs so they can take steps to prepare for emergencies, including natural and man-made disasters, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Ad Council are unveiling new public service advertisements (PSAs). For more information on WEAs and access English radio, TV, and digital PSAs visit Ready.gov/alerts; and in Spanish language visit radio, TV and digital PSAst Listo.gov/alertas.

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