"This is a great technology for law enforcement as well as emergency management," said Dyersburg Emergency Operations Manager Mark Grant.
According to FEMA's website, IPAWS is designed to improve public safety through the rapid dissemination of emergency messages to as many people as possible over as many communication devices as possible. To do so IPAWS is using smart phones, tablets and other web-connected devices to inform as many residents as possible.
In order to take full advantage of the technology Dyer County has already requested to be one of the first counties in Tennessee to be capable of transmitting local alerts.
"We can only issue alerts if there is the threat of eminent danger," said Dyer County Fire Chief James Medling during the E911 Board meeting on Tuesday.
Under IPAWS an alert is sent to your wireless device depending on your geographic location. For example, if a Dyer County resident visits Washington, D.C. they would receive applicable Washington, D.C. alerts. The alerts are sent to a targeted geographic location and there are three types of alerts:
* Imminent Danger
Users can opt out of receiving imminent danger and amber alerts by adjusting the settings on their wireless device but they cannot opt out of presidential alerts. The following is a list provided by FEMA of devices that are capable of receiving wireless emergency alerts:
* Droid 2 Global by Motorola
* Droid Pro by Motorola
* Droid X2 by Motorola
* Motorola Citrus
* LG Cosmos 2
* LG Revere
* LG Enlighten
Grant reported to the E911 Board on Tuesday that residents could begin to receive the alerts as soon as April. He reassures the board and the community that there is no fee for this service.