Blog // Connect Nevada

New Alerts Warn of Local Emergencies Directly to Your Cellphone

By CNV Staff

Contributor Kristina Silla

July is often a busy storm month in the desert. But, last week, you may have noticed a new feature on your smartphone that may make the desert storm season a little smoother.

The National Weather Service in Reno sent out an emergency alert for a dust storm warning in Northern Nevada. According to the Reno Gazette Journal website, the alert was part of new technology involving cell phone carriers and the federal government.

Many, but not all people, received this alert. These alerts are sent out via cellphone towers and are sent out complementary by wireless providers.

If you are visiting an area and an alert is sent out, you will receive the alert because you are within the radio signal’s alert range.

The RGJ Stated “It [the alert] was activated automatically for the Reno area as the result of the weather service issuing the dust storm warning. That is because a small portion of Washoe was included in the warning area, said Alex Hoon, a weather service meteorologist.”

The alert was actually meant for an Area east of Fernley but because part of Washoe County was included in the affected area, Reno received the alert as well. “Officials hope to work to refine the technology to better pinpoint the locations where the alerts are activated, he said.”

Alerts you may receive can be:

  • Extreme weather warnings
  • Local emergencies requiring evacuation or immediate action
  • AMBER Alerts
  • Presidential Alerts during a national emergency

The National Weather Service will send out warnings about:

  • Tsunami Warnings (coming late 2013)
  • Tornado and Flash Flood Warnings
  • Hurricane, Typhoon, Dust Storm and Extreme Wind Warnings
  • Blizzard and Ice Storm Warnings

For more information about this new cellphone alert technology visit the NOAA website or And for the very latest on broadband news in Nevada, make sure to keep up with Connect Nevada. Follow us on Twitter and Like us on Facebook!


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