National alert system that sends messages to phones about nearby major emergencies could 'save many lives'

·1-min read

People will be warned on their mobile phones about life-threatening emergencies in their local area, under government plans.

The new national alerting system could be used when there are incidents such as fires, floods or terror attacks.

The public will be sent messages on their mobile devices that will give clear guidance on how they can protect themselves when such events happen.

Cabinet Office minister Penny Mordaunt claimed the system, due to be rolled out in the summer, could "save many lives".

She said it was part of the government's effort to develop a new national resilience strategy following the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking at the Royal United Services Institute think tank, Ms Mordaunt said: "As seen in other countries, such alerting systems have the potential to save many lives."

She said the government wanted to build on the efforts of those who volunteered during COVID to create a "whole of society" approach so the country was better prepared to deal with future emergencies.

"What motivated people to do what they did during the pandemic was their sense of community, their feelings of duty towards their neighbours," she said.

"They wanted to help, they wanted to protect others, they wanted to support a vaccine effort and assist the most vulnerable. They asked what they could do for their country.

"Many have real skills, talents and ideas which made a massive difference. They are a huge asset when we are resetting our resilience strategy.

"If we place them at the heart of it, we will emerge from the pandemic a stronger nation."

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