No need for alarm: B.C. to test emergency alert system Wednesday

Cellphones in every corner of British Columbia will be buzzing Wednesday afternoon as the province tests its emergency alert system. 

The scheduled alert will be sent to all compatible cellphones and will be broadcast on radio and television stations at 1:55 p.m. PT.

The emergency alert system is tested twice a year to assess whether it's ready for an actual emergency.

The system revealed several glitches when it was first tested last year, with many people reporting they had not received an alert on their phones. 

To receive alerts, cellphones must be connected to a cellular network and must have up-to-date software. Anyone wishing to check whether their mobile phones are compatible with the Alert Ready system can do so online. 

Residents who experience any issues can participate in a short online survey following the test.

The Alert Ready system was launched in B.C. in April 2018, and it's meant to rapidly warn the public of any "imminent or unfolding hazards to life."

The alert program is a collaborative initiative between the federal, provincial and territorial governments.