Tags: philippines | disaster | alerts | cell phones

Philippines Disaster Alerts: Cell Phones to Get Warnings by Law

By    |   Friday, 27 Jun 2014 06:17 PM

A new law in the Philippines requires mobile phone companies to issue an alert warning people who are in the path of typhoons, earthquakes, and other disasters.

The Free Mobile Disaster Act was passed after more than 6,300 people were killed by Typhoon Haiyan and 4 million people lost their homes. The country sees about 20 typhoons every year, and volcanic activity and earthquakes occur frequently, as well.

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President Benigno Aquino III signed the law last week, bringing The Philippines in line with other countries like Japan that already require such early warning systems.

According to The Associated Press, the law specifies that alerts are to be sent to subscribers in areas projected to be hit with potential problems and that the messages should include timely information and details about evacuations, relief areas, or places where those leaving their homes can be picked up.

The Philippine Star reported that the law contains fines for companies that do not comply with the early warning system. The companies also could face suspension or revocation of their licenses or permits to operate.

The law also puts fines in place for anyone who sens out a hoax, message, the Star said.

The messages will be free to users.

The Philippine and U.S. armies also agreed this week to do more training and improve disaster response, The Philippine Star said.

Like the cell phone alert bill, the commitment by the two countries was in response to the tragic losses suffered during Typhoon Haiyan.

Lt. Col. Noel Detoyato, a spokesperson for the Philippine Army, told the AP that other countries are welcome to join in the disaster response drills.

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A new law in the Philippines requires mobile phone companies to issue an alert warning people who are in the path of typhoons, earthquakes, and other disasters.
philippines, disaster, alerts, cell phones
301
2014-17-27
Friday, 27 Jun 2014 06:17 PM
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