Cabinet Office to test sending text messages in case of emergencies

Tests to ensure that the public can receive alerts to their mobile phone in the event of an emergency will take place in selected locations throughout the country this autumn, Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude has announced (view press release).

Three tests in specific parts of Yorkshire, Suffolk and Glasgow are intended to test how various alerting technologies work and the public’s reaction to them.

According to Maude : “Messages will be sent to mobile phones in the test areas by SMS in parts of Suffolk and Glasgow, and by SMS and Cell Broadcasting in parts of Yorkshire. In total approximately 50,000 people across the 3 areas may receive the messages. The message itself will make clear that it is only a test and I do not want the public to be alarmed in any way. “

“The government and 3 mobile phone companies O2, Vodafone and EE, will conduct separate tests later this year to look at a how different technologies work and how the public react when they receive an emergency alert to their phone,” he added.

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