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Find out about Wireless Emergency Alerts

Get warnings and alerts on your mobile device.


DETAILED INFO

What to know about Wireless Emergency Alerts

We send Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) on behalf of federal, state, or local emergency management agencies. These are free notifications that have a special tone and vibration. 

Notice about the transmission of WEAs sent through the Commercial Mobile Alert System
AT&T Mobility offers wireless emergency alerts, including enhanced geo-targeting, within parts of its service area, as defined by the terms and conditions of its service agreement, on WEA–capable devices. There is no extra cost for wireless emergency alerts.

Wireless emergency alerts, including enhanced geo-targeting, may not be available on all devices or in the entire service area, or if you’re outside of the AT&T Mobility service area. For more info about this service and WEA–capable devices, please ask a sales rep, or go to att.com.

Notice required by FCC Rule 47 CFR 10.240 (Commercial Mobile Alert System).

Each WEA broadcasts at a set volume that can’t be changed. These alerts don’t interrupt phone calls, sending emails, or other online transactions. But they may override any blocks you have on your phone, like do not disturb.

If you get a WEA, take any recommended action and check your local media or the National Weather Service for more details.

Alert types

There are four types of Wireless Emergency Alerts.
  • Imminent threat alerts warn of severe weather or other disasters that pose a threat to life or property.
  • Public safety messages prescribe one or more actions likely to save lives or safeguard property. They’re related to imminent threats.
  • AMBER alerts notify communities about missing children.
  • Presidential alerts are issued by the U.S. President. You can't opt out of this type of alert.

These alert types may be received as an imminent threat or AMBER alert type, depending on the sending agency policy.
  • Silver alerts for missing older adults with dementia or Alzheimer’s.
  • Blue alerts to help capture violent criminals who kill or seriously wound federal, state, or local law enforcement officers.
  • Endangered missing persons alerts for someone missing with an intellectual disability.

Undelivered alerts
Expected to get a WEA but didn't? There are a few reasons for this.
  • Your phone can't get WEA alerts.
  • You opted out of imminent threat alerts or AMBER alerts.
  • You aren't in an area targeted to get an emergency alert.
  • Your phone was turned off or was in use when the alert was sent.
  • Your phone isn’t running the latest software. Learn how to update it

WEA versions

To find out which phones get WEA alerts, see the phones that can get wireless emergency alerts section.

Wireless Emergency Alerts 1.0

These alerts offer a 90-character, text-only message, including text URLs and phone numbers.

Wireless Emergency Alerts 2.0
WEA 2.0 alerts can be up to 360 characters and include the capabilities of WEA 1.0.

Support for Spanish alerts is offered, if the agency initiating the alert provides a Spanish version in addition to English. To get a Spanish alert along with an English alert, select your preferred language to Spanish or enable the Spanish Alert option under WEA setting menu.

WEA 2.0 supports all alert types, plus state or local test messages initiated by state and local emergency managers to test the WEA system to members of the public.

Wireless Emergency Alerts 3.0
WEA 3.0 has enhanced geographic targeting. You’ll only get an alert if you’re in an impacted area specified by the emergency alert originator. It uses the location capabilities of your mobile device, along with the impacted area in the WEA alert, to determine if you’re in the impacted area. In some circumstances, such as your device location can’t be determined, you may get the alert outside the impacted area.

WEA 3.0 also includes the capabilities of WEA 1.0 and 2.0.

Phones that get Wireless Emergency Alerts

WEA-capable phones show this logo on packaging and instruction manuals.


Wireless Emergency Alerts Capable Logo

Most recently released devices are WEA-capable. If your device is WEA-capable, install the latest software to use the feature. Go to att.com/softwareupdates from your phone or tablet to see available software updates.

See which phones can get Wireless Emergency Alerts (PDF, 137KB)

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