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“This Is Only A Test” – Here We Go Again

Remember the “civil alert” test text sent erroneously by Verizon to some New Jersey cell phone users on Monday? Don’t be too surprised if you get one again Thursday, regardless of your provider.

Bennett Raglin / Getty Images

The New York City and federal Offices of Emergency Management, Federal Communications Commission, and mobile service companies will conduct their first-ever, stem-to-stern test of cellular systems between 10 AM and 3 PM.

New Jersey Emergency Management officials issued the advisory today because people with enabled mobile devices in the Garden State might also receive the test alert.

Law enforcement agencies in Ocean, Monmouth and Middlesex Counties were swamped with calls Monday afternoon, from people who had received an alert to seek shelter immediately. Verizon later apologized for issuing the message without clearly indicating that it was a test.

If you have any questions, call your mobile service company. Their representatives have been told of the new technology and of the test.

Mary Goepfert at New Jersey’s Office of Emergency Management tells us that the test is the first of what will be a nationwide effort, region-by-region. There’s no clear timeline yet for when New Jersey’s cell networks will undergo the same exercise.


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