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Emergency mobile alert test planned for tonight

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An emergency alert test is being sent to mobile phones between 6-7pm tonight. Photo by Jonas Leupe on Unsplash

Mobile phones across New Zealand will sound an emergency alert tonight, Sunday, May 26, but don’t panic – it’s just a test.

NZ Civil Defence says the alerts are broadcast to all capable phones from targeted cell towers.

The system is tested each year and it’s a necessary part of making sure it works well.

The next nationwide test will take place tonight between 6-7pm.

“Emergency mobile alerts are messages about emergencies,” the agency says.

“They’re sent by authorised emergency agencies to mobile phones.

“Emergency mobile alerts keep people safe.

“They are broadcast to all capable phones from targeted cell towers to areas affected by serious hazards.

“You may not receive an alert if you are out of mobile coverage, mobile phone towers are damaged, or there is a power outage.”

The agency says the alert is an extra channel to help keep people safe in an emergency.

“It does not replace other alerting systems or the need to take action after natural warnings.

“You should still be prepared for an emergency, and you shouldn’t wait to get an alert before you act.

“If you feel your life is in danger, don’t wait for an official warning. Take immediate action.”

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