Alert Ready test at 1:55 Wednesday afternoon

November 27, 2019 10:06 am

At 1:55 pm Wednesday, a public test message will be issued through Alert Ready, Canada's emergency alerting system

Each participating province and territory will issue one test message to be distributed over television, radio and compatible wireless devices. In Saskatchewan and Manitoba, the alerts will be broadcast at 1:55 pm/

The Alert Ready system has been in development since 2001, has been used to issue emergency alerts over radio and televisions since 2010, and via compatible wireless devices since 2018.

Testing of all components across the country, and on a regular basis, is an important and necessary part of any public alerting system.

It provides an opportunity to validate and improve the performance and reliability of the system and to ensure it operates as it is intended in the event of an imminent life-threatening situation.

"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).

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.

Alert Ready is designed to deliver critical and potentially life-saving alerts to Canadians. It was developed in collaboration with the federal, provincial, and territorial government agencies, Pelmorex, the broadcasting industry and wireless service providers.