People Reporting FEMA IPAWS Sending Out Large Number of Emergency Alerts

We are receiving hundreds of reports from people throughout the country who are saying their phones are freezing up, some after receiving over 20 FEMA IPAWS Emergency Alerts on their phones.

Back in September, FEMA conducted a nationwide test of their EAS Integrated Public Alert & Warning System (IPAWS), but that test was announced well ahead of time and did not include the IPAWS WEA integrations that allows these types of messages to be delivered to smartphone devices. Today’s message was not announced by FEMA, so it was either a technical glitch or the system may have been hacked like back in September – then again FEMA just might need to get their shit together!

Most of the reports say the message reads:

“TEST:IPAWSTester- Area Emergency Test #1” Integrated Public Alert Warning System


A number of law enforcement agencies and 911 call centers have been inundated with calls from panicked people who have no idea what these messages mean. The fact that these emergency response agencies are puzzled by the messages suggests that this was not a regularly scheduled test since they would have been informed.

Others have taken to Twitter, trying to figure out how to disable the alerts and stop their phones from freezing up, something that would be a problem during an actual emergency. We are all for being able to alert people during times of crisis, but someone over at FEMA really needs to figure this system out!


FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) is an internet-based capability Federal, State, territorial, tribal, and local authorities can use to issue critical public alerts and warnings.

According to FEMA, IPAWS was built to ensure that under all conditions the President of the United States can alert and warn the American people.  IPAWS allows alerting authorities to deliver alerts simultaneously through multiple communications devices reaching as many people as possible. These communication pathways include Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) that send messages directly to smartphones, even when cellular networks are overloaded and can no longer support person-to-person calls, texts, or emails.

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  1. I really believe this has to do with the election tomorrow. They know it’s rigged and a lot of people are going to go nuts! So they are getting ready for the big event. But there’s a solution, bend over and kiss your ass goodbye!

  2. Florida Straight Talk phone running on Verizon and have had no alerts. I did get the original alert back when ever it was this year.

  3. Mine started at 1:21 pm and went off every 5 minutes until 4:11 pm when I finally figured out how to turn off notifications. I too, am a US Cellular customer.

    • Barbara here from Loveland, Colorado. Metro PCS user….I have been receiving since 3pm today and phone is froze. Definitely has to be related to the election… I would almost bet that Trump is behind this…so his people could go in and hack the total electoral counts. He’s a snake for sure. Scary shit happening …

  4. I spoke with the FEMA IPAWS office about this today. It was a cell companies R&D lab that was doing a number of tests with their closed system. Problem was that somehow it got connected to the network that sends the messages over the air. It has happened before, just not on a national scale.

  5. got one this afternoon didn’t know what it was so deleted it a little later my husband called to see if I got an alert I said yes but deleted since I didn’t know what it was. He had looked up and said it was a government alert of sorts. No one else at his office got any. We are US Cellular customers in Oklahoma.

  6. I received these alerts at 2:06, 2:36, and 4:06 p.m. There were some that I already deleted and they all came to Dubuque, IA~~~yes US CELLULAR carrier ~~~ from around noon on, I think 6 total.

  7. Started about 1:15pm and went off every 5-10 min for 2 hrs, until I went into my msging app and shut the alerts off. Very annoying. Central Illinois

  8. I am a US Cellular customerin Northern Illinois. I received one alert on my active phone and I also received an alert on my inactive phone. I thought my phone was hacked.

  9. Some of the fema hf radio frequencies have been more active than usual, sending criptic and Un criptic test messages by data mode

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