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Friday, May 24, 2024(newsetter versionweb version

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VashonBePrepared is a coalition of some 10 disaster preparedness organizations on Vashon-Maury Island in Washington's Puget Sound region. We work closely with local and county organizations.

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VashonBePrepared provides training and educational opportunities to keep the island community prepared for the next emergency.

Latest Updates

1st Use (in CA) of the Wireless Emergency Alert Program

Aug 7

Written by:
8/7/2013 8:28 AM  RssIcon

Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) LogoWireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) provide free notifications of imminent threats to safety or missing persons to your mobile device. In order to receive WEAs, you must have a capable device and be located in an area (e.g., county) targeted by Authorized Senders to receive one of 3 types of alerts:

  1. Presidential Alerts – Alerts issued by the President or a designee;
  2. Imminent Threat Alerts – Alerts that include severe man-made or natural disasters, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc., where an imminent threat to life or property exists; and
  3. AMBER Alerts– Alerts that meet the U.S. Department of Justice's criteria to help law enforcement search for and locate an abducted child.

 

The buzzes or beeps are delivered based on your proximity to the emergency, not based on your phone number or home location. So visitors to Puget Sound from Kansas should still receive local tsunami alerts.

Messages are sent on a special wireless carrier channel called Cell Broadcast – not affected by regular cellphone traffic that would be heavy after an emergency. Cell towers broadcast the signal simultaneously to all mobile devices within their range. The free system does not track phones' whereabouts.

Emergency alerts are enabled by default on devices capable of receiving them. Users can change their phone's message or alert message settings if desired.

The first actual use of this in CA was used Monday, August 5th for an Amber Alert. The system was first deployed in April 2012.

More info on Wireless Emergency Alerts:

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