Unless you have a news station on 24/7, there are going to be times when you are “out of the loop”. Have you ever wondered how you might know if things really started hitting the fan? If you’re in a meeting, how would you know if there was a terrorist attack not far from home? If you’re out of earshot of a tornado siren, how would you know if there was a danger of one while inside and away from a window?
Here are multiple ways to stay in the know, and like GI Joe says, “knowing is half the battle!”
Local news outlets are often a great source for local weather alerts. Many have a smart phone app or will text weather alerts to your phone. Check your local station to see if they do. Weather.com Some also have the ability to send daily forecasts and alerts.
A weather radio is the best way to be alerted to weather emergencies. Here is a review of the two I own. I have also read that weather radios can alert in national emergencies as well.
If you’re a cubicle Jockey and tethered to a PC, this might be an option for you. I’m not going to list MSM news sites such as FOX and CNN. They sometimes have information worth reading, but I figure if you like them, you’re already reading. I’m also not going to list local sites, but they can be a great way to keep informed of local emergencies.
Here are some of the sites I use to stay informed. I probably use the Drudge Report more than any other site. I can quickly scan the headlines for important articles and if there is an important news story, it is often linked in the top left, above the picture. The picture is also an important news article or an emergency.
Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and other social media can be a good way to keep informed and find out about breaking news and emergencies. Of course, you’re also subject to hearing a lot of things you don’t care that much about. Wait, that last part might just be me. (LOL)
FEMA also has the ability to send you text alerts for the following types of emergencies.
- Presidential Alerts; issued by the President or a designee;
- Imminent Threat Alerts; include severe man-made or natural disasters where a looming threat to life or property exists;
- AMBER Alerts; help law enforcement search for abducted children.
A call tree is basically a tiered list; everyone has designated people they will call. Below is an example. The person at the top of the tree decides an emergency alert needs to go out. They call their three people. Those three, in turn, call their three people and on and on until everyone on the list has been called.
Due to advancements in technology, call trees aren’t used often anymore. There are also ways to automate your call tree, One Call Now is one such service.
Alert USA and Threat Journal
From the Alert USA Website:
“AlertsUSA continually monitors the national and international threat environment using a variety of information and intelligence sources. These range from a variety of government departments and agencies (foreign and domestic), private sector assets and a number of additional HUMINT and OSINT source points.”
For $99 per year you can have breaking alerts sent to you via email, text message, pager or satellite phone. They also send out a free email newsletter called Threat Journal and posts updated to their social media outlet.
Do you have any other ways to keep informed and be alerted to emergencies?
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