Canada Canadian phones to get emergency alert tests this week, here's when to expect yours

12:55  07 may  2018
12:55  07 may  2018 Source:   cbc.ca

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Emergency Preparedness Week is an annual event in Canada that takes place the first full week of May. It encourages Canadians to learn steps to protect themselves and their families in case of an emergency . So don’t be alarmed when you get this interesting alert on Monday.

Here ' s When Brampton's Cherry Blossoms Are Expected to Bloom. The system is called Alert Ready, and during Emergency Preparedness Week from May 6-12, there will be public alert tests on all compatible devices in Canada .

a hand holding a cell phone: Canadians with LTE service on their mobile devices will be getting an emergency alert message this week.© Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images Canadians with LTE service on their mobile devices will be getting an emergency alert message this week.

Mobile devices across Canada will be buzzing a little more than usual this week as emergency management officials test a new national public alert system.

Test signals are to be sent to millions of mobile users in Quebec around mid-morning today and across Ontario in mid-afternoon.

Cellphones, tablets and other devices will receive the signal in most of the rest of the country on Wednesday.

Depending on settings, users with compatible devices connected to an LTE network will hear a tone similar to an ambulance alarm or feel a vibration for eight seconds. Devices that are turned off won't receive the signal but phone users will hear their conversations interrupted by a sound similar to a call waiting tone.

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Canadians can expect to start getting test messages on their phones in May as part of the overall testing of the entire emergency alert system – including the traditional broadcast alerts , Belanger said.

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Preparing for disasters, emergencies

The tests are being conducted after the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) ordered wireless providers to implement the system to distribute warnings of imminent safety threats such as tornadoes, floods, Amber Alerts or terrorist threats.

Radio and TV stations will also run the tests.

a woman talking on a cell phone: Mobile users will get the pings on their phones at different times depending on their province.© Provided by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Mobile users will get the pings on their phones at different times depending on their province.

A similar system is already used in the U.S., and made headlines earlier this year when an emergency official in Hawaii mistakenly sent an alert about a potential incoming ballistic missile.

A report issued last month by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission said the false alarm, which went uncorrected for 38 minutes after being transmitted and caused widespread panic across the Pacific islands state, was a result of human error and inadequate safeguards.

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Canadian local phone numbers should be dialled without the trunk prefix '1', which is for domestic long distance calls. Recent Comments for Track Phone Number Location Canada . Canada ’ s new public emergency alert system will be put to the test next week .

“ When you’re getting those alerts your life is at risk,” Tanguy said. A startling test alert was accidentally sent out at 1:30 a.m., which prompted many to seek ways to opt-out of the system. Saskatchewan’ s provincial emergency public alerting program also had a bit of a hiccup in January

"The CRTC has no insights with respect to what occurred in Hawaii, other than what has been reported in the media," the regulator said.

"But Canada has safeguards in place" to prevent false signals from being distributed to mobile devices, said CRTC spokeswoman Patricia Valladao.

Not a text message

Unlike wireless emergency alerts issued in the U.S., Canada's system requires a specific vibration cadence, alert tone and banner to notify users of an emergency.

As well, the emergency alerts are not text, or SMS, messages, but are distributed using what's known as cell broadcast technology. The messages can't be tracked by service providers so they can't tell who has or has not received the alert, the CRTC said.

Some Canadian service providers sent text messages to subscribers last week alerting them to the tests, which are mandatory and may require users to acknowledge a message before they can resume normal use of their devices.

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Canadians will now get emergency wireless alerts to their compatible cellphones when connected to LTE, starting today. Click here to visit the Alert Ready website to see if your smartphone is compatible.

Copy link to Tweet. Here ' s the URL for this Tweet. Follow more accounts to get instant updates about topics you care about. More like making sure all phones are connected to government, traffic jams secondary.

Here are the scheduled times for the tests. All times are local:

Monday

Wednesday

  • Quebec 9:55 a.m.
  • Ontario 1:55 p.m.
  • Yukon 1:30 p.m.
  • Northwest Territories 1:55 p.m.
  • Alberta 1:55 p.m.
  • British-Colombia 1:55 p.m.
  • Saskatchewan 1:55 p.m.
  • Manitoba 1:55 p.m.
  • Newfoundland and Labrador 1:55 p.m.
  • Nova Scotia 1:55 p.m.
  • Prince Edward Island 1:55 p.m.
  • New-Brunswick 6:55 p.m.
  • Complaints about Thunder Bay Amber Alert from other parts of the province 'disheartening': OPP .
    Ontario Provincial Police say they'll continue to do everything in their power to disseminate information about abducted children in the province, despite complaints from some people who received Monday's Amber Alert about a boy in Thunder Bay, via their cell phones. The alert, about an 8-year-old boy in Thunder Bay who was later found safe, went out over the new mobile emergency alert system.

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