What to expect from the UK Emergency Alerts service

In recent news, the UK government has launched a new Emergency Alerts service designed to alert the public of different emergency situations. This service is being rolled out across the country and is set to become an important tool in helping people stay safe and informed during emergency situations. The first national test emergency alerts will take place on Sunday 23 April 2023 at 3 pm.

What is the UK Emergency Alerts service?

The UK Emergency Alerts service is a new system that will send an alert to people's mobile phones in the event of an emergency. In order to do this, the government will be using a new alerting system based on the cell broadcast system. Using this new technology, they will be able to send text-based messages to all mobile phones in a specific area using 4G and 5G networks, regardless of whether the user has signed up for the UK government service or not.

The alerts are secure, free to receive, and one-way. They do not reveal your location and do not collect any personal data.

Once received, your mobile phone or tablet device will vibrate and make a loud siren-like sound, even if it’s set on silent. The alert itself will include a warning and details about the affected area and advice on what to do.

Alerts in the future may also include a phone number or a link to the GOV.UK website for more information for the public.

What types of alerts will be sent?

The Mobile Alert service will send crucial information on a number of different emergency situations, including:

  • Public health emergencies: such as pandemics, outbreaks of infectious diseases or food contamination.
  • Severe weather: such as floods, heavy snow, and strong winds.
  • National security incidents: such as terrorist attacks or major security incidents.
  • Public safety incidents: such as gas leaks, explosions or large-scale fires.

What action should you take when you receive an alert?

When you receive an emergency alert, it is important to read the message carefully and follow any instructions in the alert that are provided. The message will provide information about the emergency and what action you should take to stay safe. This may include staying indoors, avoiding certain areas or evacuating the area altogether.

It is also important to share the alert with family and friends who may not have received it, particularly if they are in the same area. This will help to ensure that everyone is aware of the emergency and can take the necessary steps to stay safe.

Who is responsible for the alerts?

The emergency alert system will be used exclusively for sharing information on real emergency news. As such, they cannot be used by networks, service providers or resellers. They can only be managed by:

  • Emergency services
  • Government departments, agencies and public bodies that specifically deal with emergencies.

For more information on the new service and an example of how the alerts may appear, you can visit the GOV.UK link here. Looking to upgrade your business comms with new business mobile plans that enable flexible working and remote working? Try our Gemini business mobile service.

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