Emergency Alerts

On 23 April this year, a test emergency alert will be sent to mobile phones across the UK.

This is to trial a new national Emergency Alerts system, which enables people to be contacted via their mobile phone when their lives or property may be in danger.

It will only be used to warn residents in the event of local or national emergencies, like public health emergencies, severe floods, fires and industrial incidents. Only the government and emergency services will be able to send them.

Emergency Alerts are sent to all compatible 4G and 5G mobile phones and they do not need your location or phone number. Anyone who does not have a compatible mobile phone will be kept informed through other channels.

If you get an Emergency Alert on your phone, you’ll hear a loud, siren-like sound. A message on your screen will tell you about the emergency and how best to respond. You’ll be able to check an alert is genuine at: gov.uk/alerts.

If you receive an alert, read the alert carefully and follow the instructions. If you receive an alert when you are driving, do not pick up your phone and attempt to deal with the message – find a safe and legal place to pull over first.

I’d be grateful if everyone could share this information with residents they support or work with to ensure that people do not worry if they receive the test alert on 23 April.

A communication toolkit has been produced to help people share the messages, this includes posters, leaflets, factsheets and videos, which you may find useful.

Access the communication toolkit

The emergency alert will sound even if you have your phone on silent, which may put some groups at risk, particularly those in an abusive relationship who have a secret or secondary phone.

You can opt out of receiving emergency alerts - for more information on this visit: gov.uk/alerts or see this video created by Refuge.

To find out more about Emergency Alerts, visit: gov.uk/alerts.

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