Weather service launches alert system to keep families safe during monsoon

Weather emergency alerts get upgrade

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - With monsoon flooding always a possibility, a new alert system has launched to keep you and your family safe.

It’s just one of many ways the National Weather Service is working to keep you out of harm’s way while on-the-go.

The new Wireless Emergency Alerts capabilities include:

  • More information to act on. Alerts are expanded from 90 to up to 360 characters.
  • Expanded language capabilities. Alerts now support Spanish language messaging.
  • Alerts will be more targeted to reach those who need it. Only phones within 1/10th of a mile of the affected warning area will be notified.

“These upgrades are important because getting the word out to more people that they may be in danger gives them more time to react and escape,” Kenneth Drozd, meteorologist for NWS Tucson, said.

Drozd said this system doesn’t locate individual cell phones. However, if you are traveling and enter an area with an active WEA, you may later receive an alert.

To turn on these alerts: Go into Settings -> click Notifications -> scroll down to Government alerts and turn them on.

Please note: not all cell phones have these capabilities. To find out if your phone does, check with your wireless provider or phone manufacturer.

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