Wednesday, September 12, 2012

What is Public Alerts?

You may have seen advertisements recently regarding signing up to receive free public alerts.  We have received a few questions as to how this relates to our (ECNS) Emergency Community Notification System.

  • The Public Alerts website is at and provides a portal for all of the community notification system sign-ups in the Portland metropolitan area.  This is NOT a replacement for our current system, but allows people who may work or live in a neighboring jurisdiction a “one-stop-shop” to find their home notification system.

  • As always, we want you to know that the ECNS system in place here in Clark County (and across the metro area) only draws in landline phones.  You MUST REGISTER your cell phone or VOIP phones with an address to receive alerts to those phones.  Standard cell and/or text messaging may apply.

* The information below is shared from Public Alerts.  We hope it helps explain more about this new system and how it works.  

What is PublicAlerts?
PublicAlerts is an online connection for residents in the Portland area to real-time emergency information, including the following:
1.    Alerts and service disruptions involving roads and bridges, transit, public health, public safety, utilities, community services, schools and weather.
2.    Links for residents to sign up for the community emergency notification system in their county of residence.
3.    Resources on how to be prepared for an emergency and join community emergency response teams (CERT) and neighborhood emergency teams (NET).

Who is involved with PublicAlerts?

PublicAlerts is administered by the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management on behalf of the region. The lead partners are the City of Portland and Clackamas, Clark, Columbia, Multnomah and Washington Counties. The PublicAlerts homepage currently includes information from the following agencies:

  • 211info (via @211infoalerts)
  • City of Gresham (via @CityofGresham)
  • Clackamas County (via @clackamascounty)
  • Clackamas County Emergency Management (via @ClackamasEM)
  • Clackamas Fire District #1 (via @clackfirepio)
  • Clark County Public Health (via @ClarkCoWA_PH)
  • Clark County Public Works (via @ClarkCoWA_PW)
  • Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (via @CRESA)
  • Clark Public Utilities (via @ClarkPubUtilFA)
  • Columbia County Rider (via @rider_cc)
  • C-TRAN (via RSS feed)
  • DoveLewis (via @dovelewis)
  • Hillsboro Fire & Rescue (via @HillsboroFire)
  • Multnomah County (via @multco)
  • Multnomah County Animal Services (via @multcopets)
  • Multnomah County Bridges (via @multcobridges)
  • Multnomah County Emergency Management (via @multcoem)
  • Multnomah County Health (via @multcohealth)
  • Multnomah County Roads (via @multcoroads)
  • National Weather Service (via two RSS feeds)
  • NW Natural (via @nwnatural)
  • Oregon Department of Transportation – TripCheck (via @TripCheckPDX)
  • Oregon Office of Emergency Management (via @OregonOEM)
  • Oregon National Guard (via @OregonGuard)
  • Oregon State Police (via @ORStatePolice)
  • Pacific Power (via RSS feed)
  • PGE – Portland General Electric (via @pgemedia)
  • Port of Portland (via @flyPDX)
  • Portland Bureau of Development Services (via @BDSPortland)
  • Portland Bureau of Emergency Management (via @PublicAlerts)
  • Portland Bureau of Environmental Services (via @BESPortland)
  • Portland Bureau of Transportation (via @PBOTinfo)
  • Portland Fire & Rescue (via @PortlandFirePIO)
  • Portland Housing Bureau (via @PortlandHousing)
  • Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement (via @PDXInfo8234000)
  • Portland Parks & Recreation (via @PDXParksandRec)
  • Portland Police Bureau (via @PortlandPolice)
  • Portland Water Bureau (via @PortlandWater)
  • Sandy Fire District (via @SandyFireDist)
  • Sellwood Bridge (via @sellwoodbridge)
  • TriMet (via RSS feed)
  • Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue (via @TVFR)
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (via @PortlandCorps)
  • U.S. Geological Survey (via @USGSbigquakes and RSS feed)
  • Washington County Roads (via @washcoroads)
  • West Linn Police (via @WLPDNews)

In addition to direct information feeds from the above agencies, content from school districts is provided by FlashAlert Portland.

How can you get connected to PublicAlerts?

The Easiest ways to be connected to Public Alerts is to follow @PublicAlerts on Twitter.  They will Re-Tweet any emergency notifications from the agencies listed above.

Go to the Public Alerts webpage.  There you can see the entire stream of what is going on in the Metro, and surrounding area you may need to know.

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