Canada's testing its emergency alert system -- here's what you need to know

May 9 2023, 2:36 pm

If you hear an emergency alert on your phone, TV, or radio tomorrow, don’t be alarmed — Canada’s testing its public alert system.

Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), which regulates and supervises broadcasting and telecommunications, announced that it’s testing its public alerting system across the country on May 10.

Alberta and Quebec, however, will not be part of the tests.

In a tweet, CRTC stated that public alert messages will be broadcast on various devices.

Alert Ready, Canada’s national warning system, was created in partnership with federal, provincial, and territorial emergency management officials to “deliver critical and potentially life-saving alerts to Canadians through television, radio and compatible wireless devices.”

As of May 9, 2023, Alert Ready has issued 107 emergency alert messages with Albertans receiving 87 alerts (2 for civil emergencies and 85 for wildfires).

So what can you expect from the test alert?

You’ll be informed that the message is a test and that you won’t need to take action to stay safe. If you’re on a wireless device, you might be required to confirm that you received the emergency alert in order to be able to use your device again. Otherwise, the alert sound and vibration will continue for another eight seconds before turning off by itself.

For people who are hard of hearing, deaf, blind, or partially sighted, other alert formats may be issued depending on the device.

You cannot opt out of these test alerts and if you don’t receive one, make sure to check here to see if your device is compatible.

Here’s the testing schedule across Canada:

Alberta — No test in May

BC — Wednesday, May 10, 1:55 pm PDT

Manitoba — Wednesday, May 10, 1:55 pm CDT

New Brunswick — Wednesday, May 10, 10:55 am ADT

Newfoundland & Labrador — Wednesday, May 10, 10:55 am NDT

Northwest Territories — Wednesday, May 10, 9:55 am MDT

Nova Scotia — Wednesday, May 10, 1:55 pm ADT

Nunavut — Wednesday, May 10, 2:00 pm EDT

Ontario — Wednesday, May 10, 12:55 pm EDT

Prince Edward Island — Wednesday, May 10, 12:55 pm ADT

Quebec — No test in May

Saskatchewan — Wednesday, May 10, 1:55 pm CST

Yukon — Wednesday, May 10, 1:55 pm MST

The next test alert is scheduled for November 15. Check here for more information.

Irish Mae SilvestreIrish Mae Silvestre

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