Emergency warnings broaden their reach – Metro US

Emergency warnings broaden their reach

Alberta’s emergency public warning system will soon include text messaging on mobile phones and pop-up windows on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, the government announced yesterday.

The province will also “take advantage” of new technologies like satellite radio and TV to alert residents during disasters and Amber Alerts, announced Municipal Affairs Minister Ray Danyluk as he kicked off Emergency Preparedness Week at Churchill Square.

“We want to have as much access to the public as we possibly can,” said Danyluk.

“We need to have the best system for the safety of Albertans.”

Danyluk said the government has consulted with a number of media partners and stakeholders to find ways on how to improve the emergency system that has been operating for the last 15 years.

“Our system was the first provincial-wide system in Canada, but it only accessible to television and radio,” said Danyluk. “We believe we need to broaden that scope.”

During weather emergencies and Amber Alerts, the City of Edmonton has agreed to use its electronic construction signs to help the province alert the public.

The new system is expected to be in place by the middle of next year.