By Fanni Barocsi
Imagine there’s a tsunami or a tornado in your area and you have no idea! Well, great news, your phone is in the know.

Your phone has the power to send you life-saving alerts. In the past, the country-wide Alert Ready system broadcasted alerts through television and radio. However, by broadcasting alerts through your cell phone, the system can send geo-targeted alerts and warn you directly of any imminent danger.

The system works by transmitting messages through cell phone towers in the area. For the alert system to work, you need a compatible cell phone. If your cell phone is compatible you will hear a distinct tone that will be followed by a message. The message will outline the type of alert happening in your area. The types of alerts include natural disasters such as floods or tornados, fires, biological and terrorist threats, as well as amber alerts.

The alerts can also be tailored to your specific needs. For example, you can choose the message language. You can also specify if you want the message to be sent as a text message, an audio message or both.

The Alert Ready system is designed in partnership with Environment Canada, The Weather Network and wireless service providers. You don’t need to sign up and you also can’t opt out. The system is designed to ensure that you’re fully aware of any dangerous situations in your area so that you can act accordingly and protect yourself and others.

The Alert Ready system will be tested on compatible cell phones on May 7th in Ontario and Quebec, and on May 9th across the rest of Canada.

We encourage all Canadians to be ready for emergencies. Preparedness is your best defence! Make a plan, get a kit, prepare your family. Check out our website for more tips and be ready.

To be ready for emergencies in your area, you should also check out our Be Ready app compatible with both iOS and Android devices.