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Smartphones Announce Blizzard Alerts

 Blizzard Alerts on SmartphoneOn Thursday at 4 a.m. people on the road were startled, not about the ‘East Coast Storm’, but their phones started informing their owners about the storm and their duties at that time automatically.

Some phones had started buzzing loudly showing an alert image along with the explanation for the alert message; others started talking in a female voice with texts sent from the ‘National Weather Service’. The texts urged for emergency actions within one hour and also to avoid the travelling.  Also, blizzard warning was issued for certain areas for different time frames. Although the message was to reach everyone with specifically equipped phones, but didn’t go to everyone.

When approached, the FCC and FEMA stated a similarity between the ‘Emergency Alerts’, or WEAs on Thursday and the emergency notifications issued throughout Hurricane Sandy. The emergency notifications were fabricated to alert the mass about 3 kinds of emergency conditions- imminent threats (includes extreme weather conditions), AMBER alerts and the White House presidential alerts via their phones.

Shortly after the Hurricane Sandy, Chris Guttman McCabe, a CTIA vice president talked about affiliating with numerous carriers to spread the messages when needed. He also said that the service was free and people wouldn’t have to register for the alert service. CTIA worked closely with FEMA to ensure maximum effectiveness and to prevent any kind of abuse.

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