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WEA National Test on September 20th, 2018 @ 1:18PM CDT

Graphical representation of what a Presidential Alert will look like on cellular phones. In this case the alert is a test message.


IPAWS National Test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA)

Thursday, September 20, 2018

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) on September 20, 2018. The WEA portion of the test commences at 2:18 p.m. EDT, and the EAS portion follows at 2:20 p.m. EDT. The test will assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed.

The WEA test message will be sent to cell phones that are connected to wireless providers participating in WEA. This is the fourth EAS nationwide test and the first national WEA test. Previous EAS national tests were conducted in September 2011, 2016 and 2017 in collaboration with the FCC, broadcasters, and emergency management officials in recognition of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month.

The EAS is a national public warning system that provides the President with the communications capability to address the nation during a national emergency. The test is made available to EAS participants (i.e., radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers) and is scheduled to last approximately one minute. The test message will be similar to regular monthly EAS test messages with which the public is familiar. The EAS message will include a reference to the WEA test:

“THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcast and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communications Commission, and local authorities to keep you informed in the event of an emergency. If this had been an actual emergency an official message would have followed the tone alert you heard at the start of this message. A similar wireless emergency alert test message has been sent to all cell phones nationwide. Some cell phones will receive the message; others will not. No action is required.”

Cell towers will broadcast the WEA test for approximately 30 minutes beginning at 2:18 p.m. EDT. During this time, WEA compatible cell phones that are switched on, within range of an active cell tower, and whose wireless carrier participates in WEA should be capable of receiving the test message. Some cell phones will not receive the test message, and cell phones should only receive the message once. The WEA test message will have a header that reads “Presidential Alert” and text that says:

“THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”

The WEA system is used to warn the public about dangerous weather, missing children, and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones. The national test will use the same special tone and vibration as with all WEA messages (i.e. Tornado Warning, AMBER Alert). Users cannot opt out of the WEA test.

If circumstances, such as a major weather event, cause the IPAWS National Test to be postponed, the back-up date is Wednesday, October 3, 2018.

To learn more go to:

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Financial assistance available for those affected by July tornadoes, Newton Daily News Reporter Christopher Braunschweig

Eligible businesses, homeowners encouraged to apply by SBA

Damaged businesses and residents affected by the July 19 tornadoes in Jasper, Grundy, Hardin, Marshall, Poweshiek, Story and Tama Counties have been offered low-interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

According to a July 30 news release, the Washington, D.C.-based government agency acted under its own authority to declare a disaster in response to a request received by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds on July 25, allowing businesses, entrepreneurs, most private nonprofit organizations, renters and homeowners, whose property was destroyed or damaged in the affected counties, to receive assistance.

SBA Administrator Linda McMahon said in the release, “SBA is strongly committed to providing Iowa with the most effective and customer-focused response possible, and we will be there to provide access to federal disaster loans to help finance recovery for businesses and residents affected by the disaster. Getting our businesses and communities up and running after a disaster is our highest priority at SBA.”

Representatives of SBA have set up a Disaster Loan Outreach Center Aug. 1 at Fisher Community Center, 709 S. Center St., in Marshalltown. From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, officials will be able to meet with those affected by the storm in person to answer questions about SBA’s disaster loan program and walk through the application process to its completion.

The deadline for filing a physical property damage application is Sept. 28. The economic injury application filing deadline is April 30, 2019.

SBA Public Information Officer Burl Kelton said financial loans can sometimes be overlooked by individuals and businesses who are in the middle of recovering their losses or trying to return things back to normal, especially small businesses.

“Because this is a disaster-only type of situation — unless they’ve been through it before — a lot of times they don’t know about it,” Kelton said. “We go through the whole process of trying to get the word out and let folks know that it’s here.”

Businesses of all sizes, as well as private nonprofit organizations like charities, churches and private universities, are eligible for SBA disaster loans. Borrowed funds up to $2 million can be used to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the eligible business owners, including real estate, equipment, machinery, supplies and inventories. Home loans are limited up to $200,000 for repair and replacement of real estate and up to $40,000 to repair or replace personal property.

SBA can also lend additional cash reserves to businesses and homeowners to improve the protection, prevention or minimization of the same type of disaster damage from happening again.

Small businesses — including small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofits — are offered Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) to assist in meeting working capital needs caused by a declared disaster. Economic injury assistance, the news release states, is available regardless of whether the business suffered any property damage.

Acceptable credit history, ability to repay all loans and collateral for physical loss loans and EIDL loans exceeding $25,000 are required by all applicants. Loan terms up to a maximum of 30 years; the only exception being a maximum of seven years for businesses with credit elsewhere. Installment payment amounts and their maturity will be set by SBA and be based upon individual borrower’s abilities to repay loans.

Kelton said interest rates are held at two levels: no credit elsewhere and credit elsewhere individuals. The distinction between the two is determined by whether the business or homeowner has available resources to recover. Typically, SBA interest rates are higher by those who have credit elsewhere.

No credit elsewhere home loan interest rates for this particular disaster are set at 1.938 percent; credit elsewhere rate is set at 3.875 percent. Business loans for no credit and credit interest rates are 3.610 and 7.22 percent; economic injury loans for businesses and small agricultural cooperatives are also set at 3.610 percent. Nonprofit loan interest rates are fixed at 2.5 percent.

“It’s voluntary and you apply for however much you’re eligible for and there’s no obligation,” Kelton said. “So, if you’re in the processing of trying to get a livable space or take care of some other things, you can make that application and find out what you’re eligible for … There’s no rush. We can work with folks after the loan application and they find out what they’re eligible for to determine what would work best for them. It’s another tool in the recovery toolbox and could be a real big help.”

For more information, those affected by tornado damages in the aforementioned counties are asked to call SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955, apply online using the Electronic Loan Application at https://disasterloan.sba or visit the Disaster Loan Outreach Center to speak with an SBA representative in Marshalltown.

Contact Christopher Braunschweig at 641-792-3121 ext. 6560 or

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Disaster Proclamation

Gov. Reynolds issues disaster proclamation for four counties


JULY 2, 2018 – Gov. Kim Reynolds issued a disaster proclamation today for Boone, Dallas, Jasper, and Polk counties in response to flooding and severe weather beginning June 14 and continuing.


The governor’s proclamation allows state resources to be utilized to respond to and recover from the effects of this severe weather in these four counties and activates the Iowa Individual Assistance Grant Program for qualifying residents, along with the Disaster Case Management Program.

Map of the counties covered by governor's proclamations in June 2018. Click on the map to access a PDF version.

The Iowa Individual Assistance Grant Program provides grants of up to $5,000 for households with incomes up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level or a maximum annual income of $41,560 for a family of three. Grants are available for home or car repairs, replacement of clothing or food and temporary housing expenses. Original receipts are required for those seeking reimbursement for actual expenses related to storm recovery. The grant application and instructions are available on the Iowa Department of Human Services website. Potential applicants in Warren County have 45 days from the date of the proclamation to submit a claim. (Aug. 16, 2018)


Disaster Case Management is a program to address serious needs to overcome a disaster-related hardship, injury or adverse condition. Disaster case managers work with clients to create a disaster recovery plan and provide guidance, advice and referral to obtain a service or resource. There are no income eligibility requirements for this program; it closes 180 days from the date of the governor’s proclamation. For information on the Disaster Case Management Program, contact your local community action association or visit


Residents of counties impacted by the recent severe weather are asked to report damage to help local and state officials better understand the damage sustained. Damage to property, roads, utilities and other storm-related information may be reported. This information will be collected by the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management and shared with local emergency management agencies.


The governor has issued four previous proclamations that activated the Iowa Individual Assistance and Disaster Case Management programs as a result of the same storm system:

  • Friday, June 29
    Application deadline is Aug. 13, 2018
  • Wednesday, June 27
    Cherokee, Webster
    Application deadline is Aug. 13, 2018
  • Monday, June 25
    Hancock, Humboldt, Plymouth, Sioux, Winnebago
    Application deadline is Aug. 10, 2018
  • Friday, June 21
    Clay, Dickinson, Emmet, Kossuth, Lyon, Osceola, Palo Alto, Scott, Story
    Application deadline is Aug. 6, 2018
  • Friday, June 15
    Hamilton, O’Brien
    Application deadline is Aug. 2, 2018

On Saturday, June 23, the governor issued a disaster proclamation for Lyon, Plymouth, Sioux, and Woodbury counties, which suspended regulatory provisions of Iowa Code related to the hours of service of disaster repair crews and drivers delivering goods and services while responding to a train derailment in Lyon County.


Gov. Reynolds also issued a disaster proclamation on Monday, June 11, for seven counties as a result of a separate storm system that began June 7: Allamakee, Bremer, Chickasaw, Cerro Gordo, Floyd, Howard and Winneshiek counties. The deadline to apply for assistance in those counties for that storm system is July 27.

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Heat Awareness

Most Summers in the United States produce heat waves that bring health risks if precautions are not taken. Heat is one of the leading weather-related killers in the United States, resulting in hundreds of fatalities each year and even more heat-related illnesses.

During extremely hot and humid weather, your body’s ability to cool itself is challenged due to decreased evaporation of sweat. When your body can no longer adequately cool itself or when too much water or salt is lost through sweating, your body temperature rises and heat-related illness can occur.

In 2017, there were 42 vehicular heatstroke children deaths in the United States. So far this year, there have been 7 vehicular heatstroke deaths in the United States. Never leave children or pets in a vehicle. Look before you lock! The temperature in a vehicle can quickly become deadly. If the out-side temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit, in 10 minutes the temperature inside the vehicle will be near 100 degrees, in 30 minutes near 115 degrees and in 1 hour, near 125 degrees.

During periods of hot and humid weather:

Drink water often
Take breaks and cool down
Wear lightweight, loose fitting, light-colored clothing to reflect sunlight
Eat light and easy-to-digest foods such as fruit or salads
Make sure pets and livestock have access to water
Check on neighbors

For additional safety and forecast information visit:

The National Weather Service is working with its partners to build a Weather-Ready Nation to support community resilience in the face of increasing vulnerability to extreme weather. Visit the Des Moines NWS office website, follow us on Twitter (@NWSDesMoines) and on Facebook

The Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management leads, coordinates and supports homeland security and emergency management functions in order to establish sustainable communities and ensure economic opportunities for Iowa and its citizens. Follow us on Twitter (@IowaHSEMD) and on Facebook.


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Saving the Whole Family Disaster Preparedness


Tornadoes, floods, fires, blizzards, terrorism… Devastating natural and man-made disasters can ravage

our lives. No one is exempt from the possibility of being personally affected. You need to prepare for yourself and

for your animals in case of disaster. The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has

developed this booklet to help you avoid having to leave your animals stranded in the event of a disaster or an

evacuation. For the most current information click on the link below

Saving the whole family

additional websites

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20 Weeks to Preparedness

Develop An Emergency Kit-SAFEGUARD Iowa Partnership

This emergency supplies calendar is intended to help you prepare for emergencies before they happen. Using the calendar, you can assemble an emergency supplies kit in small steps over a five-month period. Check off items you gather each week. Remember to change and replace perishable supplies by the expiration date. Suggested food purchases would provide meals for approximately three to five days.

Click on the link below to print off a copy of the list.


For more information visit Safeguard Iowa on Facebook, Twitter, or at

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Alert Iowa Weather Update-Includes NWS Link to Show Towns Impacted

Inspiron Logistics has updated their weather alerts. When a weather alert is received on someone’s phone in addition to the usual text an URL link will now be embedded in the message. If the URL is clicked on, a web browser message will appear that will show the entire script from the National Weather Service. This will include the towns impacted and potential impacts of the storm. This will provide a lot more detail to residents. Rather than just receiving an alert that says their county is impacted and not knowing what the impacts might be or if their town is going to be hit. 

Now is the time for residents to sign up for emergency alerts if they have not done so previously. Please visit the Jasper County Emergency Management Agency’s website at and click on the Alert Iowa button in the top right hand corner of the homepage. You can also type in the link below to register.


Sign up for emergency alerts for Jasper County.
Messages can be issued via landline or wireless phone, text messaging, email, FAX, TDD/TTY, and social media.




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i-SERV in Jasper County


Date: 11/22/2016

From: Jasper County Emergency Preparedness Coalition

To: Local Media and Community Providers


i-SERV in Jasper Countyi-serv


Jasper County is in need of volunteers to sign up with the Iowa Statewide Emergency Registry of Volunteers (i-SERV). The Iowa Department of Public Health’s secure online registry for individuals wishing to volunteer in the event of a large scale disaster or public health emergency.  As of October 1, 2016 there are 2,233 volunteers registered in iSERV. i-SERV is part of a federal effort to coordinate and assemble volunteers for all types of emergencies.

The i-SERV on-line registration includes questions about basic personal information and professional skills. Volunteers have the ability to decide travel distance and length of deployment. Based on the information provided, public health officials will identify and contact those individuals suited to fill the specific volunteer roles needed in an emergency.

Who can volunteer?

Anyone can volunteer. An emphasis is currently being placed on the recruitment of licensed medical and healthcare volunteers that will satisfy clinical needs and provide surge capacity for public health emergencies. However, volunteers who do not have any medical training are welcomed and are encouraged to register. There will be a need for volunteers with all types of skills and expertise, such as those who are skilled in: interpretation (languages and hearing impaired); administration; transportation training; provision of day care; security; computers; clerical work; data entry; and construction. All volunteers are valued, even if you have no specific qualifications other than the willingness to help.

If you would like to sign up, please visit the following website


If you have additional questions, please contact Becky Pryor at Jasper County Health Department at (641)787-9224.

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