Don’t be alarmed if you receive or hear an emergency alert on Wednesday. That’s when Alert Ready, Canada’s emergency alert system, is scheduled to send out a test message across the country through various mediums.
Provinces and territories that are taking part in the practice will issue a test message through television, radio and compatible wireless devices at different times throughout the day. Since April 6, all new phones sold in Canada are compatible with the Wireless Public Alerting service.
When the alert is sent out, a message appears on the phone saying that it is a test message. It will not require users to take action.
The alert will be tested throughout the country during the following times:
Alert Ready Test Times - November 27, 2019
1:55 PM MST
1:55 PM PST
1:55 PM CST
10:55 AM AST
Newfoundland & Labrador
10:55 AM NST
9:55 AM MST
1:55 PM AST
No test scheduled
2:55 PM EST
Prince Edward Island
12:55 PM AST
1:55 PM EST
1:55 PM CST
1:55 PM PST
This system has been in place since 2010, alerting the public of emergencies through radio and television. The program expanded to compatible wireless devices in 2018. Since the start of this year, Alert Ready has helped government officials send out 130 emergency alerts, and 1,413 since the program first started nearly 20 years ago.
Pelmorex, the company that runs Alert Ready, says regular testing across the country is an important part of helping the system run smoothly. Testing this nation-wide system on a consistent basis helps improve the performance and reliability, should an impending and life-threatening situation occurs.
Canadians have mixed feelings on the system. Some consider it necessary for public safety, while others find it invasive.
Hey all there is a new emergency system being tested in canada tomorrow. Goddamn amber alert shit popping up hate it. Eating.
— Christian Bewell (@LWOCBewell) November 26, 2019
Please DO NOT CALL 911 when you get the Emergency Alert. Just be thankful we have such a system. https://t.co/ynnA6Z2Dht
— 🇨🇦🍁Cheryl🍁🇨🇦CANADA🍁🇨🇦 (@mini_bubbly) November 25, 2019
I just experienced Canada’s Alert Ready system. Amazing. This would be useful in the UK and other countries. #alertready #canada #security Alert Ready | Alert Ready, Canada's New Emergency Alert System pic.twitter.com/hWFGGePTnV
— Peter Skaronis (@Peter_Skaronis) February 15, 2019
Did anyone else in Canada get that test emergency alert on ur phone today wtf my phone was playing music and then the siren from the notif and it said emergency alert omffffg I thought I was actually gonna die pic.twitter.com/TwPUc2so0y
— bimbo (@bimbobuddhist) November 29, 2018
Did we even have an emergency alert system in Canada before Trump was elected?
— ₭₳₮❥ (@xgolddustkittyx) June 22, 2017
Some Canadians have expressed concerned if they didn’t receive past alerts.
Well, my phone didn't go off for the test on Canada's emergency alert. So either I've been selected to die or Canada is not alert ready. pic.twitter.com/TtWG0XsuRh
— Mr Frank McVeety (@Franktmcveety) May 7, 2018
My family all hav iPhones from Koodo & none of us received the alert! R we about to be obliterated if emergency situation!😕😬😱lol #EmergencyAlert
— Penny kardos-farmer (@PennyKardos) May 10, 2018
Canadians do not have the option to opt-out from getting the alert on their mobile devices.