Region to Discontinue Use of Notify Me Now
Medicine Hat – The Regional Emergency Management Agency, comprised of the City of Medicine Hat, Cypress County, and Town of Redcliff, has opted to cease using the emergency notification system, Notify Me Now. Acquired in 2015, the system enabled the agency to alert residents of emergency situations in the region.
Since that time, Alberta Emergency Alert (AEA), Alberta’s public warning system, has upgraded the National Public Alerting System (NPAS) through Public Safety Canada. The AEA can now provide the distribution of emergency alerts via cellular broadcast messaging, in addition to radio, cable television, and satellite television. With this upgrade, it was determined that the Notify Ne now platform is no longer necessary.
“Public Safety Canada announced the potential NPAS upgrade in 2017, and it was implemented earlier this year,” says Merrick Brown, Director of Health, Safety Environment and Emergency Management for the City of Medicine Hat. “The system has been used throughout the year, and during this time, the region evaluated its effectiveness prior to making the decision to discontinue Notify Me Now.”
Residents do not need to sign up for AEA notifications as they are automatic, triangulating through local cellular towers to deploy push notifications to all compatible cellular devices in the area, as opposed to the Notify Me Now system, which requires self-registration. The AEA system also uses cellular broadcasting messages, whereas Notify Me Now uses standard text messaging.
“Local residents can be assured that the AEA system will provide enhanced emergency alert support to our area, and several members of the Regional Emergency Management Agency have already been trained and granted access to the system,” says Brown.
The current contract with Notify Me Now expires on January 28, 2019, and will result in an annual savings of $18,500. The AEA system can be accessed by trained designates within municipalities at no cost.
For more information or media inquiries
Director, HSE and Emergency Management