Tsunami warning alert message was just a test, National Weather Service says

Posted at 9:21 AM, Feb 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-06 10:28:56-05

A tsunami warning test message had many people panicked Tuesday morning.

The test was issued by the National Weather Service Tuesday morning to several cities on the East Coast.

Those with the Accuweather app reported that a Tsunami Warning alert appeared on their phones. However, when you open the alert, it says the message is for test purposes only.

The National Weather Service in Wakefield released a statement:

This morning there was a release of a TEST Tsunami Warning which was possibly released via some 3rd party applications. NOAA is seeking answers to find out how the TEST was disseminated. No local warnings were issued by the NWS office and the Emergency Alert System was NOT activated. Had hen been a live warning the Emergency Alerts System and Wire Emergency Alert system would have been activated in addition to all other outlets similar to a Tornado Warning. This was not the case in this situation.

TEST Tsunami messages are coordinated every month and the format and content of those test messages remains the same. These tests are conducted to ensure proper communication between the Tsunami Warning Center and other part of NOAA including local NWS offices. This is a very efficient and fast warning system which needs to be tested routinely. In this situation a TEST messages appears to have been picked up and redistributed and NOAA will work to determine the exact cause.

The test from this morning appears to have all the proper TEST coding and wording identical to past test messages which have been conducted routinely without issue for several years.