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Old Dec 17, 2012, 04:27 PM   #1
Orange Crane
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Emergency Alerts

Yesterday I recieved a notification in the Emergency Alerts portion of my notification center. This was the first time I'd seen this, it made a ringing noise that reminded me of the Emergency Broadcast whine they test out on tv and radio now and then. It warned me of a Blizzard Warning in my area. I'm in Seattle, it is likely to snow in the mountains but we rarely get more than a dusting down here by the water. I thought it was funny yesterday, but less so at 5 this morning when it went off again with a second Blizzard Warning. It's sunny and 45 degrees in Seattle right now, so these unsolicited Emergency Alerts seem to be fairly useless. I see that there is a section in Settings to turn off these emergency reports and amber reports, which is fine. My concern is, why are these reports so far totally bunk? Anyone else have experience with this?
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 05:16 PM   #2
smithrh
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It's a new system and there are still some kinks and configuration issues for the government and operators to work out yet.

When all is said and done, notifications will be down to pretty small areas. No one want to cry "wolf" with this system.

I would contact your carrier with your complaint and see what they tell you.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 05:18 PM   #3
unknownbeing
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You can turn them off.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 05:20 PM   #4
s15119
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
Yesterday I recieved a notification in the Emergency Alerts portion of my notification center. This was the first time I'd seen this, it made a ringing noise that reminded me of the Emergency Broadcast whine they test out on tv and radio now and then. It warned me of a Blizzard Warning in my area. I'm in Seattle, it is likely to snow in the mountains but we rarely get more than a dusting down here by the water. I thought it was funny yesterday, but less so at 5 this morning when it went off again with a second Blizzard Warning. It's sunny and 45 degrees in Seattle right now, so these unsolicited Emergency Alerts seem to be fairly useless. I see that there is a section in Settings to turn off these emergency reports and amber reports, which is fine. My concern is, why are these reports so far totally bunk? Anyone else have experience with this?
Wierd, I heard from quite a few people who got that Alert - not all iPhone users. I'm an ATT iPHone user and did not get the notice. I wonder if it's just a certain carrier.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 05:25 PM   #5
Orange Crane
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smithrh View Post
It's a new system and there are still some kinks and configuration issues for the government and operators to work out yet.

When all is said and done, notifications will be down to pretty small areas. No one want to cry "wolf" with this system.

I would contact your carrier with your complaint and see what they tell you.
Apparently the issue was that these alerts are county wide. King county includes snoqualmie pass, which should be in the middle of a bit of snow just now, being a mountain pass in December (hello). I do hope they improve the system, as I live by the beach a long drive from mountain passes and do not care to hear the ebs test loudly randomly an hour before my morning alarm is set. Although I probably won't notice if they do as I've turned the gov't alerts off.

It was on verizon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by unknownbeing View Post
You can turn them off.
Reading tells us,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
I see that there is a section in Settings to turn off these emergency reports and amber reports, which is fine. My concern is, why are these reports so far totally bunk?
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 11:46 PM   #6
smithrh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
Apparently the issue was that these alerts are county wide. King county includes snoqualmie pass, which should be in the middle of a bit of snow just now, being a mountain pass in December (hello). I do hope they improve the system, as I live by the beach a long drive from mountain passes and do not care to hear the ebs test loudly randomly an hour before my morning alarm is set. Although I probably won't notice if they do as I've turned the gov't alerts off.

It was on verizon.
Yep, for now, county-wide alerts. However, the small size I referred to earlier will be down to individual cell sites or even just sectors of cell site, for this exact reason. Counties are big and have varied topography, like in your instance.

I may be able to find a timeline for when the alert areas will be getting smaller, I'll poke around a bit. There's work for the government (deciding how to was areas smaller than a county) and the cell service providers (how to get those alerts out to just the right area).

Again, the "crying wolf" problem is understood and everyone wants to avoid it.

Also, AT&T is not participating, while Verizon is.
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Old Dec 18, 2012, 11:05 AM   #7
Orange Crane
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Originally Posted by smithrh View Post
Yep, for now, county-wide alerts. However, the small size I referred to earlier will be down to individual cell sites or even just sectors of cell site, for this exact reason. Counties are big and have varied topography, like in your instance.

I may be able to find a timeline for when the alert areas will be getting smaller, I'll poke around a bit. There's work for the government (deciding how to was areas smaller than a county) and the cell service providers (how to get those alerts out to just the right area).

Again, the "crying wolf" problem is understood and everyone wants to avoid it.

Also, AT&T is not participating, while Verizon is.
Cool, thanks for the info. K+ for your avatar as well.
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Old Dec 18, 2012, 06:47 PM   #8
smithrh
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Not an endorsement of this vendor, but they do a decent job of explaining CMAS for those of you interested:

http://www.cmasalert.com/cmas.html

Demos, some showing how specific areas can be defined:

http://www.cmasalert.com/cmas9.html

Comparison of CMAS to other alerting systems:

http://www.cmasalert.com/cmas10.html

As a disclaimer, there appear to be a few things on this site that I'm not really sure are in the standard, so it's for high-level education only.

(For instance, this website calls CMAS "Cellular Messaging Alert System" while the actual abbreviation is "Commercial Mobile Alert System.")
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