(Black Press Media files)

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

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

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.

READ MORE: B.C. to run another test of emergency alert system for cell phones, wireless devices

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

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

New Victoria Conservatory music scholarship recognizes long-time Sidney resident

O. Thomas Webb died in Sidney last year after retiring to the community in 1975

Victoria resident lives well despite dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

New Oak Bay bylaw supports planting 5,000 new trees

Residents can share thoughts on new tree protection bylaw at Jan. 29 open house

New BC Ferries hybrid-electric vessels arrive in Victoria

BC Ferries plans to add four more hybrid-electric vessels to fleet

Blue Monday is a myth but seasonal affective disorder and winter blues are real

Canadian Mental Health Association says weather can affect mood

VIDEO: Cold snap brings ideal conditions for Okanagan icewine

Take an inside look at how icewine is made

Horgan cancels event in northern B.C. due to security concerns, says Fraser Lake mayor

The premier will still be visiting the city, but the location and day will not be made public

PHOTOS: Eastern Newfoundland reeling, search underway for missing man after blizzard

More than 70 centimetres of new snow fell overnight, creating whiteout conditions

Prince Harry, Meghan to give up ‘royal highness’ titles

‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,’ says Queen Elizabeth II

Ice chunk from truck crushes vehicle windshield on Vancouver Island

None injured, but Nanaimo RCMP say there can be fines for accumulations of ice and snow

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Calls for dialogue as Coastal GasLink pipeline polarizes some in northern B.C.

Coastal GasLink is building the 670-kilometre pipeline from British Columbia’s northeast to Kitimat on the coast

Intense winds en route to Greater Victoria

Winter storm warning in effect for east and west regions while wind warning to hit south and north

Theft victim confronts suspects with baseball bat on Vancouver Island

RCMP in Nanaimo seek to identify of two people alleged to have used a stolen credit card

Most Read