Civil defence launches smartphone alert app
Smartphones might just save your life.
This week Auckland Civil Defence launched a free app that will alert people to impending natural disasters, such as tsunamis and cyclones, and keep them informed following major disruptions.
The app can be employed on all smartphones, which are used by an estimated half a million Aucklanders.
By synchronising with the Auckland Civil Defence website, the app will also keep Aucklanders up to date on incidents such as road closures, floods, slips and severe wind warnings.
‘‘With so many Auck- landers using smartphone devices, it made sense that any new warning system needed to embrace new technology,’’ Auckland councillor Michael Goudie, chairman of the Auckland Civil Defence Committee, says.
Mr Goudie says with half the population active on Facebook, Aucklanders should also take responsibility in ‘‘times of emergency’’ to ensure their friends and family stayed informed.
Civil Defence controller Clive Manley says: ‘‘Radio and television will continue to play a vital role in disseminating public alerts, but now we have added the hugely significant channel of person- alised and immediate alerts to all those Aucklanders with smartphones.’’
The launch comes ahead of the New Zealand ShakeOut national earthquake drill on September 26.
The Auckland Civil Defence app can be downloaded from a variety of sources.
iPhone users can download it from the Apple App Store by searching for ‘‘Auckland Civil Defence’’, while Android users can download it from Google Play’s Android app store.
More information on the alert system is available at aucklandcivildefence.org.nz.