FEMA Responds to Criticism of Nationwide EAS Test, Says It’s Taking ‘Shortcomings Seriously’

By Andrew Gauthier 

FEMA has responded to reports of widespread failures during Wednesday’s nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System, saying it takes “these shortcomings seriously” and intends “to work closely with all participants over the next several weeks as we assess the nature of problems with the nationwide test and how best to address them effectively.”

While it went off without a hitch in many places, the first-ever nationwide test of the EAS was marred with criticism this week after viewers from across the country reported problems, including the test occurring for much longer than scheduled or it not appearing at all.

FEMA’s director of public affairs wrote on the agency’s blog this week that the test “served its intended purpose–to identify gaps and generate a comprehensive set of data to help strengthen our ability to communicate during real emergencies.” FEMA is encouraging people to email feedback about the test to ipaws@dhs.gov.