HB Alerting, Warning & Notification Systems

During an emergency, local officials and emergency managers must provide the public with life-saving information quickly. The City of Huntington Beach uses multiple methods to provide information to the public, such as the Emergency Alerting System (EAS), AlertOC, HBTV 3, etc. Once an emergency notification from public safety officials is delivered, follow the instructions provided.

Emergency Alert System (EAS)The EAS system is a national public warning system that requires AM/FM radio stations, TV and cable TV systems to provide federal, state and local authorities to deliver important emergency information.   The EAS system will be activated and will provide instructions on actions to take before, during and after an emergency. If you receive an EAS message, DO NOT call 911 for information. This congests the 911 system and could prevent someone with a life threatening emergency from receiving services.

fire-station-sirensbSiren SystemHuntington Beach has sirens located at all eight city fire stations. The sirens are tested on the First Friday of each month at noon. The sirens may be activated for ANY impending emergency and is NOT specific to any one emergency. If you hear the sirens, and it is NOT the first Friday of the month, turn on your television, visit the main page of the City website or follow official City social media.

Alert OCAlertOC is a mass notification system designed to keep Orange County residents and businesses informed of emergencies and certain community events. By registering with AlertOC, time-sensitive voice messages from the County or City in which you live or work, may be sent to your home, cell or business phone. Text messages may also be sent to cell phones, e-mail accounts and hearing impaired receiving devices.

To register, visit www.alertoc.org.

Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA)WEA allows regional text warnings to be delivered directly to WEA-enabled mobile devices. WEA messages target individual cell sites; however, some bleed over is expected. All participating wireless providers are required to transmit alerts to a geographic area that best approximates the area affected by the emergency situation, even if it is smaller than a county.

The public does not need to register for this service. WEA geo-locates individuals so messages will reach all WEA-capable devices within the specified area, including visitors. A WEA alert appears on the screen of the recipient’s handset as a text-like message. The alert is accompanied by a unique attention signal and vibration, which is particularly helpful to people with hearing or vision-related disabilities.

WEA is intended to complement other mass notification systems (EAS, AlertOC, Social Media) in that it alerts the public, including visitors, of a significant event or disaster where they might need to take action. WEA is the same technology used to transmit Amber Alerts for missing children; however, cities cannot send Amber Alerts. In California, Amber Alerts are issued by the California Highway Patrol.