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Alerts: To Send or Not to Send

Steven Noel  (Emergency Communications Chief, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA))

Tom Lawless  (Emergency Communication Coordinator, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA))

Ryan Hirae  (Deputy Chief, Telecommunications Branch, State of Hawaii Emergency Management Agency)

Budge Currier  (Public Safety Communications Director, State of California Governor's Office of Emergency Services)

Location: W240C

Date: Wednesday, March 27

Time: 10:10 am - 11:10 am

Track: 911 & Alerts, Incident Management

Topic: Interoperability, Regulatory

Format: Panel Session

Vault Recording: TBD

When and who are the two biggest questions when considering an alert. Over the last 5 years, the fear of using emergency alerts & warnings has increased, stimming from an instance where a false alert in Hawaii's North Korea incident resulted in mass firings/resignations. This fear has delayed critical alerts & warnings, resulting in casualties in multiple areas. For instance, the Santa Barbara area mudslides resulted in 21 deaths from a delayed warning. By the late alert, cell towers in the impacted area were already destroyed. Emergency alerts have been called into question because they do not reach a wide enough audience. During a recent catastrophic neighborhood fire, the Colorado Marshal Fire, residents expressed "they weren't even aware the flames were approaching." This panel will discuss how to evaluate if and when to send out alerts & warnings and how to ensure they get out to the widest possible audience to prevent tragedies like this from occurring in the future. Panelists will also review steps you can take to make sure communities are alerted when disaster strikes, such as signing up to receive emergency alerts on your cellular device.  

Key Takeaways:
1. Gain an insight into how interoperability across multiple government agencies is vital in emergency response
2. Hear about real-world examples of ESF-2 deployment used established relationships and partnerships to promote an effective emergency response
3. Discover ways to build relationships across multiple government agencies now in order to help promote effective incident management in the future