A public test message will be issued through Alert Ready, Canada’s emergency alerting system, by most provincial and territorial emergency management organisations on Wednesday, November 27, 2019.
Participating provinces and territories will issue one test message over television, radio and compatible wireless devices at different times.
The alert will be issued in BC at 1:55 PM PST.
The alert provides an opportunity to validate and improve the performance and reliability of the system and to ensure it operates as it is intended for an imminent life-threatening situation such as an environmental threat, a biological hazard and a terror event.
Since April 6, 2019, all new phones sold in Canada are wireless public alerting (WPA) compatible. As more compatible wireless devices replace older ones, more Canadians will be able to receive emergency alerts on their wireless device.
In addition to being WPA compatible, the wireless device must also have the most recent software version, correct phone settings and be connected to an LTE network in order to receive an emergency alert.
You can check WPA compatibility of your wireless device here.
The Alert Ready system has been used to issue emergency alerts over radio and televisions since 2010, and via compatible wireless devices since 2018. Alert Ready has enabled government authorities to deliver 130 emergency alerts since January 1, 2019 and 1,413 since its creation in 2010.
No emergency alert message has yet been issued in BC in 2019. In Alberta, 36 such messages have been issued which were about dangerous highway conditions, overland flood, tornado, train accident and wildfire.
“Not all provinces and territories have had the need to issue an actual alert. Test alerts educate Canadians on what an emergency alert will look and sound like in the event of a life-threatening situation; across television, radio and compatible wireless devices,” says Martin Belanger, Director of Public Alerting at Pelmorex, operator of the technical infrastructure of Alert Ready, known as the National Alert Aggregation and Dissemination System (NAAD).
You can participate in this survey to give your feedback on the alert.