New Delhi: Netizens have taken to social media to share the “Emergency Alert – Severe” message from the government on their mobile phones on Friday (September 15) around mid afternoon.
“This is a SAMPLE TESTING MESSAGE sent through Cell Broadcasting System by Department of Telecommunication, Government of India. Please ignore this message as no action is required from your end. This message has been sent to TEST Pan-India Emergency Alert System being implemented by National Disaster Management Authority. It aims to enhance public safety and provide timely alerts during emergencies,” the notification stated along with the date and time it was issued,” the message read.
The notification flashing on people’s phones is part of a system designed by the government to alert people in times of emergency, such as a flood or landslip.
Previously too, users since the month of August, had recieved this ’emergency alert: severe message’, making today’s instance being the 6th such message.
Notably, in July this year the Department of Telecommunications announced that, in collaboration with National Disaster Management Authority, it will be conducting a Cell Broadcast Alert System testing to enhance emergency communication during disasters and ensure the safety and well-being of our valued citizens.
“In our continuous commitment to the safety of citizens of India and the communities, tests of Cell Broadcast Alert System are being conducted on each Telecom Service Provider. These tests will be performed from time to time in various regions across country to gauge the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency alert broadcasting capabilities of the systems in place, of various Mobile Operators and Cell Broadcast System,” the Ministry of Communications had said in a release.
The Cell Broadcast Alert System is a state-of-the-art technology that allows us to send critical and time-sensitive messages for disaster management to all mobile devices within a designated geographical area, irrespective of whether the recipients are residents or visitors. This ensures that important emergency information reaches as many people as possible in a timely manner. It is used by government agencies and emergency services to inform the public about potential threats and keep them informed during critical situations. Cell Broadcast is commonly used to deliver emergency alerts, such as severe weather warnings (e.g., Tsunami, Flash Flood, Earthquake, etc), public safety messages, evacuation notices and other critical information.
“During the testing period, people may receive simulated emergency alerts on their mobile devices. We assure that these alerts are part of the planned testing process and do not indicate an actual emergency. Each test alert will be clearly labeled as a “SAMPLE TESTING MESSAGE” to avoid confusion,” it had added.