Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Encouraging start for Emergency Mobile Alert

9 February 2018

Encouraging start for Emergency Mobile Alert

New Zealand’s new Emergency Mobile Alert system has been well received by New Zealanders, according to an independent survey commissioned by the Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management (MCDEM).

MCDEM Director Sarah Stuart-Black says the first live nationwide test was conducted on 26 November last year, and the Colmar Brunton survey findings show that it met expectations, and that the public values the new system.

“We predicted that about a third of Kiwis would receive the first test message, and that’s proven to be spot on. That number increases to around half of Kiwis when you include people who were near somebody who received an alert. It’s an encouraging start, and we know those numbers are set to increase substantially as people replace their handsets over time.

“It’s also clear that Kiwis really value having this new channel to help keep them and their loved ones safe, with nearly three in four people expressing confidence in the Emergency Mobile Alert system.

“The system brings some real benefits - we can geographically target areas, we don’t need your personal details, and it doesn’t get affected by network congestion.”

Next steps

Mrs Stuart-Black says MCDEM is now working closely with providers to identify and implement further improvements to the system.

She says that the broadcast of the test message was a success, with the transmission reaching all parts of New Zealand with cell reception. The next challenge is improving the system’s performance at the receiving end by addressing issues with various mobile phone models.

“The broadcast of the message was a success, but there are still some issues at the receiving end. The nationwide test was valuable in highlightingvariability in how different models of mobile phones behaved. To address this, we’re working with providers to identify enhancements to software and default settings that will bring greater reliability and consistency.

“Over time, more people will be able to receive the alerts – even those with basic, cheaper phones.”

Most new handsets sold in New Zealand are compatible with Emergency Mobile Alert, with some retailing for as little as $49. Phones bought overseas or through parallel importers may not receive Emergency Mobile Alerts as they may not be configured specifically for New Zealand.

Other findings

Mrs Stuart-Black says the survey also showed that lower percentages of older people, rural people and people on low incomes received the test alert. This is expected to improve as compatible devices become cheaper and more readily available. Mrs Stuart-Black also stressed the importance of staying informed through other emergency information channels.

“Emergency Mobile Alert should be seen as an additional information channel, rather than the be-all and end-all. It’s as important as ever to use radio, TV, social media and websites to get information and advice when an emergency happens, and to pay attention to the natural warning signs. Remember – if you’re near the coast and you experience an earthquake that is long or strong, get gone.”

Key findings from the survey are:

• 34% of New Zealanders received the alert on their phones

• 49% either received the alert or were near someone who did

• 72% of mobile users believe the EMA system will be an effective way of alerting New Zealanders in an emergency

• 66% of New Zealanders were aware of the Emergency Mobile Alert system prior to the test taking place

The survey is available online here.

Emergency Mobile Alert uses cell broadcast technology to send alerts to all compatible mobile phones within a geographically defined area. Alerts can be issued by a range of Government agencies to warn the public of threats to life, health or property. The system is administered by MCDEM.

Find out more about Emergency Mobile Alerts at www.civildefence.govt.nz.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Rationing Of PPE Gear, Masks And Everything Else

From the outset, the perceived need to ration our scarce resources seems to have driven the response to Covid-19. Rationing still appears to be limiting the ability of nurses and other frontline workers to access and routinely wear the PPE gear they need to do their job safely. Initially at least, we were also rationing the public’s access to Covid-19 testing. We also continue to pick and choose among the scientific evidence to justify advising the public against the need for them to wear masks…. If it hasn’t done so already, this trend will end up eroding public confidence in the Ministry of Heath assurances that hey don’t worry people, we have enough PPE gear, testing kits and masks to go around. Counter factual : if we’re rationing it, we haven’t got enough... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Ethics (and Some Of The Economics) Of Lifting The Lockdown

As New Zealand passes the half-way mark towards moving out of Level Four lockdown, the trade-offs involved in life-after-lockdown are starting to come into view. All very well for National’s finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith to claim that “The number one priority we have is to get out of the lockdown as soon as we can”…Yet as PM Jacinda Ardern pointed out a few days ago, any crude trade-off between public health and economic well-being would be a false choice... More>>


Police Commissioner: Christchurch Terrorist Pleads Guilty

Police acknowledge the guilty pleas in the Christchurch Mosque attacks prosecution that were entered in the Christchurch High Court today. The guilty pleas to 51 charges of murder, 40 charges of attempted murder and one charge of engaging in a terrorist ... More>>


Transport: $54 billion Investment In Draft GPS 2021

The Draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) 2021 on land transport confirms that the Government will invest a record $54 billion in its balanced transport policy over the next decade. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Loss Of Abortion Safe Zones

No doubt, last night’s defeat of abortion law reform provisions that would have created safe zones around abortion clinics will be portrayed, by some, as a victory for free speech. It isn’t. It was a victory for bigotry and intimidation directed ... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On National's Regulation Crusade

Lets step back in time now, to simpler days and to simple-minded solutions. So…. if National gets elected, landlords will once again be able to evict tenants at will, raise rents anytime they like, and ignore the need to install a healthy standard of heating in the homes they put out to rent. This promised ‘bonfire of regulations’ is being done in the name of cutting red tape... More>>


SMC - Expert Reaction: PF2050 Strategy

DOC has released a strategy to reach Predator Free 2050, along with an action plan through to 2025. The predator-free goal focuses on three groups of mammals: possums, three species of rats, plus stoats, ferrets and weasels... More>>






InfoPages News Channels