Emergency Alerts Sound in Halls of Government, Too

Blaring interrupts reporters' questioning at White House
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 4, 2023 4:04 PM CDT
Emergency Alerts Sound in Halls of Government, Too
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks during a briefing at the White House on Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The government was subject to the nationwide test of the nation's emergency alert systems on Wednesday. Reporters' phones began blaring just before 2:20pm ET during a White House press conference, interrupting their questioning of White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. "Well, it works," she said when the blaring began. It began again when reporters would turn their phones back on. The tests of the Emergency Alert System and Wireless Emergency Alerts also interrupted press conferences on Capitol Hill and courtroom proceedings, the Hill reports.

People who did not receive the alert weren't being ignored; those phones could have been turned off, on airplane mode, or just too far from a cell tower, per the Hill. Or the line already was in use; in that case, the alert is supposed to show up once that conversation ends. "The national test will not interrupt a phone call," FEMA said. Phones that have Amber alerts turned off are still supposed to get this one, per Axios.

The AP reports that Russia also tested its emergency warning system Wednesday, with sirens wailing and TV stations broadcasting warnings. According to Russian media, the exercise simulated a response to a nuclear conflict in which more than two-thirds of housing and all vital infrastructure were destroyed. (Read more FEMA stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.