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Nationwide Emergency Mobile Alert System Coming Soon

Emergency Mobile Alert System Coming Soon

A new nationwide Emergency Mobile Alert system, which sends alerts to mobile phones around New Zealand, is being introduced by the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management (MCDEM).

Horizons Regional Council emergency management manager Ian Lowe says the alerts will be sent out if life, health or property is in serious danger.

“These alert messages can only be sent by the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management, Civil Defence Emergency Management Groups, NZ Police, Fire and Emergency New Zealand, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry for Primary Industries,” says Mr Lowe.

“There will be a national test of the system on 26 November 2017 and this will give the public an opportunity to learn exactly how they work. From that stage onwards the system will be considered operational.”

Mr Lowe says people don’t need to sign up or download an app, as the alerts are sent using cell broadcast technology.

“If your phone is on, capable of receiving them and inside the targeted area, you should get the alerts.”

As the Horizons Region is susceptible to a range of disasters, such as floods and extreme weather, earthquakes, tsunami and volcanic eruptions, having an Emergency Mobile Alert System is another way people can find out about what to do when there is an emergency.

“We still encourage people to have a battery or solar powered radio and to keep tabs on the Civil Defence Manawatū Whanganui Facebook and Twitter account during an emergency, but we are pleased the Emergency Mobile Alerts is another way for our community to be informed and get the information they need,” says Mr Lowe.

Minister of Civil Defence, Kris Faafoi, says Emergency Mobile Alerts are an additional channel to help keep New Zealand safe in an emergency and does not replace other alerting systems, or the need to take action after natural warnings.

The nationwide test is a way to test MCDEM’s systems, the cell towers and phones’ ability to receive an Emergency Mobile Alert.

“Not all phones are capable of receiving the alerts, so if you receive an emergency alert, let others know. You can check whether your phone will receive the alert and find out more at civildefence.govt.nz. If you feel your life is in danger, don’t wait for an official warning,” says Mr Lowe.

To find out whether your phone can receive the alerts visit www.civildefence.govt.nz and ensure your phone is on the most up to date operating system.


ENDS


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