When situations of emergency close to our surroundings, public authorities and security forces use all kinds of means to alert the population quickly. Television, Internet or radio are some of the channels that allow us to know as soon as possible what is happening and the steps we have to follow to stay safe. In the case of our mobiles, a service that informs us in these situations.
As we said, the mobile also receives these alerts when there are serious or extreme situations that put the population at risk. These can save us in life on many occasions, and luckily they are available in the vast majority of devices. Are the calls wireless emergency alerts, and we are going to explain what they are and what types there are.
What are Wireless Emergency Alerts
They are notices or messages that reach our device when there is a emergency situation in our area. They can come to us when natural disasters occur, when a child is lost or simply to carry out tests to prevent dangerous situations. They are displayed on the screen of our device in the form of a notification, and it includes information about the type of alert that it is, the duration and the measures to be taken, as well as the agency or body that issues it.
These work efficiently thanks to an advanced messaging service, called Cell Broadcast. This technology is practically compatible with most mobile phones around the world. In this way, when alarms are sent to all devices, they are not compromised or show reception failures, even though there is an overload of messages and calls, as is often the case in these cases.
Regardless of whether our mobile is silent or vibrating, you will always know how to recognize these alarms. When serious or extreme situations occur near us, our mobile will emit a noise alarm for about seconds yet volume very high. It is done so that we quickly realize the message and can take action instantly.
How they are activated
We can manage these alerts in the settings of our device very easily. The safest thing is to keep all of them activated to have good coverage in dangerous situations, but you can always modify them to your liking. To do this, you just have to follow the following steps:
- Open the Settings from your phone
- Next, look for the section of Notifications and access it.
- Access the Advanced settings. The name may vary in some manufacturers, such as Advanced configuration.
- Once there, look for the tab Wireless emergency alerts.
Here you will see all the types of alerts available. You can choose or not to receive notifications, configure the vibration, the sound, and even listen to the messages of the alerts with the voice synthesis of your device. On the other hand, you also have access to a record where you can see all the emergency alerts that have been issued in recent months.
Types of emergencies
Each country has different types and they are classified according to severity. However, most are the same in all parts of the world, and are as follows:
They are the most serious, and they occur when life or property is at high risk. Normally these messages suggest the displacement of people to avoid greater evils. They may be natural disasters very severe, such as a tsunami or hurricane orterrorist attacks. Even so, in European countries and specifically in Spain, notifications of this type do not usually arrive, but in America and Asia they are very frequent.
These occur in less serious situations than the previous ones, but they can be of the same type. Even so, they usually include some measures given by the authorities to keep you safe, and it is not necessary to move to another place or take other extreme measures.
They are intended to locate missing or abducted children. Its origin dates back to Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old girl who was kidnapped and murdered in 1996. These alerts give us information of all kinds from the authorities, such as suspects who may have kidnapped the child, descriptions of vehicles and their license plates. On the other hand, the child’s information may include the clothes he was wearing, the name or the last time he was seen.
As its name suggests, these types of alerts occur when the governments or authorities of a country make tests and they launch messages to the population to evaluate the preparation of infrastructures and alerts in an emergency situation. In the United States they are very common and tend to be shipped with some regularity
Finally, these alerts are usually classified as extreme, but in this case they are issued directly by the president of a country. They cannot deactivate, although it is very difficult for us to receive them.
Differences of AMBER alerts with other types of mobile notifications
Unlike what happens with the rest of our mobile notifications, these alerts work differently. For starters, they are not dependent on any application or other system functions. These are launched by a specific body or agency authorized by governments, and the messages are sent with a language clear so that the entire population can understand it.
These alerts reach all the telephones in a certain area that are registered in it, so only these will be able to receive them. Of course, there are always cases in which some terminals do not have this service available, but luckily it is already implemented in the vast majority.
On the other hand, when we receive a notification of this type, it emits a specific sound and vibration to guarantee accessibility to people with hearing or vision-related disabilities. In addition, we can receive them in situations in which we find ourselves with little coverage or we have activated the airplane mode, although the latter is not entirely true.