Emergency Public Warning System
The government of Alberta developed a public warning system as a result of the 1987 tornado that struck Edmonton and the surrounding area. This system, called Alberta's Emergency Public Warning System (EPWS) was created in 1992. This system warned the public of imminent danger. The EPWS was the first rapid warning system of its kind to use media outlets to broadcast critical life-saving information directly to the public.
Alberta Emergency Alert
2011 - EPWS was upgraded and renamed Alberta Emergency Alert (AEA). Alberta Emergency Alert was developed to address the changes in technology as radio and television moved from analogue to digital. Alberta Emergency Alert is a model of effective co-operation between government and broadcasters. Its availability to local government emergency management officials and key agencies in order to issue warnings is highly regarded within the emergency management community.
2012 - Alberta Emergency Alert received two awards for innovation and use of technology from the International Association of Emergency Managers. The organization described Alberta's system as unique in North America and innovative globally by empowering communities to issue alerts and enabling hundreds of local emergency managers across the province to quickly get emergency information directly to the public. It also noted that Alberta’s system uses technology, specifically through its use of social media, to share public safety information during emergencies.
Alberta Emergency Alert Mobile Applications
2014 - The Alberta Emergency Alert Mobile Application is now available to download for both iOS (Apple) and Android devices. This represents a substantial step forward for public alerting in not only Alberta, but Canada. Providing the public with critical and life-saving notifications regarding disaster and emergency events is an important tool for the Alberta Emergency Management Agency and local authorities, and it is just as important that our method of communications keeps pace with the technological advances of our age.