Tuesday’s statewide tornado drill went off without a hitch with one notable exception, warning messages received on many cell phones omitted the fact that the warning was just a drill.
According to the NWS, tpically this this warning is used to test NOAA Weather Radios and the Emergency Alert System (EAS). This also serves as an opportunity for local jurisdictions to test their outdoor warning sirens.
However, this year the test Tornado Warning also activated the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system which sends alerts to many cellular devices. When this WEA alert was issued, there was no wording indicating this was a test Tornado Warning.
The agency says after investigating the cause of the unintentional WEA alerts this morning, they identified that new software implemented last week mistakenly allowed the test to go out as an actual warning. The software is fixed.