Oahu to issue emergency alerts via cell phones - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Oahu to issue emergency alerts via cell phones

Ed Teixeira Ed Teixeira

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Oahu's emergency alerts will soon come through your cell phone. Honolulu's Department of Emergency Management plans to reveal more details next week.

The new system will help fill the siren gap.

State Civil Defense says it now has $14.2 million to buy 142 new sirens, but emergency leaders say they'll still need another 360. And that's where cell phones come in.

From sirens, to text messages, Oahu is hopping on the high-tech bandwagon to issue emergency alerts.

"Oahu has been talking about a mass notification system for some months now and I think from what I know they've kind of figured out how to do it," said Ed Teixeira, State Civil Defense Vice Director.

The system will be similar to what the Big Island and Kauai already have.

You subscribe online and input your phone number.

You can even get alerts via email and voice messages.

Both counties used them during last February's tsunami scare.

Shortly after, Big Island Civil Defense says its subscription numbers spiked. 

"By several hundreds, based on our counts, anywhere between 200 and 500," said Quince Mento, spokesperson for Hawaii County Civil Defense.

Kauai Civil Defense says it alerted more than 27,000 businesses and residents.

"Oh they just raved about it. They really liked it and it's free, the County pays for the subscription," said Mark Marshall, Kauai Civil Defense Administrator.

This all started three years ago, using State Civil Defense dollars.

"Both counties used the system the first year as a pilot program and loved it. The feedback from them was just great," said Teixeira.

After the pilot program ended, the Big Island and Kauai picked up the tab, between $35,000 to $50,000 a year.

But that doesn't mean you won't hear those sirens anymore.

When disaster strikes, emergency leaders say you can never have enough warnings in place.

"Although more and more of us are more reliant on technology with cell phones computers and all that, you really can't say that for 100% of the population," said Teixeira.

Hawaii County uses Talisman to issue cell phone alerts, and CityWatch for voice messages and email notifications.

Kauai County uses Blackboard Connect-CTY for its mass notification system.

To subscribe to the systems, click on the links on this page of our web site.

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Oahu's emergency alerts will soon come through your cell phone. Honolulu's Department of Emergency Management plans to reveal more details next week.

The new system will help fill the siren gap.

State Civil Defense says it now has $14.2 million to buy 142 new sirens, but emergency leaders say they'll still need another 360. And that's where cell phones come in.

From sirens, to text messages, Oahu is hopping on the high-tech bandwagon to issue emergency alerts.

"Oahu has been talking about a mass notification system for some months now and I think from what I know they've kind of figured out how to do it," said Ed Teixeira, State Civil Defense Vice Director.

The system will be similar to what the Big Island and Kauai already have.

You subscribe online and input your phone number.

You can even get alerts via email and voice messages.

Both counties used them during last February's tsunami scare.

Shortly after, Big Island Civil Defense says its subscription numbers spiked.

 

"By several hundreds, based on our counts, anywhere between 200 and 500," said Quince Mento, spokesperson for Hawaii County Civil Defense.

Kauai Civil Defense says it alerted more than 27,000 businesses and residents.

"Oh they just raved about it. They really liked it and it's free, the County pays for the subscription," said Mark Marshall, Kauai Civil Defense Administrator.

This all started three years ago, using State Civil Defense dollars.

"Both counties used the system the first year as a pilot program and loved it. The feedback from them was just great," said Teixeira.

After the pilot program ended, the Big Island and Kauai picked up the tab, between $35,000 to $50,000 a year.

But that doesn't mean you won't hear those sirens anymore.

When disaster strikes, emergency leaders say you can never have enough warnings in place.

"Although more and more of us are more reliant on technology with cell phones computers and all that, you really can't say that for 100% of the population," said Teixeira.

Hawaii County uses Talisman to issue cell phone alerts, and CityWatch for voice messages and email notifications.

Kauai County uses Blackboard Connect-CTY for its mass notification system.

Hawaii County City Watch Alerts

Big Island call phone alerts

Kauai County alerts

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