Alaska to test national emergency alert system

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaskans tuning in to their radios and TVs Wednesday morning will witness the first national emergency communications test of its kind.

Radio, television and cable providers are participating with federal and Alaska partners in a live statewide exercise of the nation’s Emergency Alert System that’s employing a never-used code to be applied in a national crisis. Officials say the test — set to begin at 10 a.m. (AST) — will help them prepare for a national test at a future date.

The three-minute test, to be activated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, is unlike regular periodic tests aired by broadcasters. It’s the first official activation of the Emergency Action Notification code, which in a real crisis would give the president access to airwaves across the nation.