Wireless Emergency Alerts Added to Alert Ready, Canada’s National Emergency Alerting System

Putting life-saving emergency alerts in the hands of Canadians

Oakville, Ontario, April 3, 2018 – Government agencies will soon be able to deliver emergency alerts to more Canadians during threat-to-life situations with the addition of wireless public alerting (WPA) to Alert Ready, Canada’s national public alerting system. Beginning April 6, wireless service providers will distribute emergency alerts received from alerting authorities directly to compatible wireless devices connected to LTE networks. Alert Ready has distributed emergency alerts over TV and radio broadcast since 2015. By adding wireless, Alert Ready will increase the reach and geo-targeting capabilities of the system, benefitting all Canadians.

“Canadians expect to receive information on emergencies through the same tools they use every day, from all levels of government working together.  The expansion of Canada’s alerting system to include wireless emergency alerts will ensure Canadians have the critical info they need at their fingertips.” The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

Alert Ready is free to consumers, and no sign-up is required to receive Alert Ready messages on wireless devices. Emergency alerts will automatically be delivered to all smartphones that operate on LTE networks and contain the necessary software. By April 2019, all wireless devices for sale in Canada must be WPA-compatible.

To help inform Canadians of this important expansion of the Alert Ready system, a national public awareness campaign launched last month, and includes digital, television and radio advertisements,  and direct-to-consumer outreach. Led by Pelmorex Corp. in partnership with wireless service providers and federal, provincial and territorial government agencies, the campaign encourages Canadians to visit Alertready.ca to determine if their current wireless device is WPA-compatible, and to learn more about emergency alerting in Canada.

“Pelmorex has a long history of helping keep Canadians safe and we’re pleased to be expanding the reach of Alert Ready with the addition of wireless public alerting,” said Maureen Rogers, Managing Director, Pelmorex Weather Networks. “We’re proud to be leading a national public awareness campaign in cooperation with all levels of government, public safety officials, broadcasters and wireless providers, to ensure Canadians know about this valuable addition to the Alert Ready system.”

The Alert Ready system was developed in partnership with Pelmorex, federal, provincial, and territorial emergency management officials, and the broadcasting industry. Alert Ready’s goal was to ensure Canadians receive emergency alerts quickly, enabling them to take action and stay safe. Adding Canada’s wireless service providers to Alert Ready will greatly enhance the system’s effectiveness.

As wireless technology has become nearly ubiquitous in Canada, alert distribution will also be more targeted, and could, for example, be limited to wireless devices within range of a single, specified wireless tower or antenna. And where Alert Ready messages were previously received only by Canadians that were actively engaged with their television or radio, the alerting sound (and an associated vibration) will emanate from all compatible wireless devices within the alerting area if the device is turned on.

“Nearly 31 million Canadians subscribe to a wireless service, and 99% of Canadians have access to LTE networks. Wireless technology has transformed the way Canadians live, work and play, and wireless devices have become integral parts of our day-to-day lives,” said Robert Ghiz, President & CEO of the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association. “Governments now have a powerful new tool to reach citizens and assist them with critical information in the event of an emergency.” Alert Ready provides authorized government agencies across Canada with a simple and easily accessible method to issue public safety messages. Cable and satellite companies, radio stations, over-the-air television stations and wireless service providers will transmit crucial Alert Ready alerts to their audiences and subscribers.

Only alerts that represent an imminent or unexpected threat to life or property will be distributed based on criteria developed by government officials. The list includes a broad range of events such as tornados, floods, biohazards and wild fires.

For more information, please visit www.alertready.ca.

To arrange an interview with Pelmorex Corp., please contact:
Emily Nag
FleishmanHillard High Road

To arrange an interview with CWTA, please contact:
Sophie Paluck, Director of Communications, CWTA
613-233-4888, ext. 207

To arrange an interview with Public Safety Canada, please contact:
Media Relations

About Pelmorex Corp.

Pelmorex Corp.is a market leader in operating multi-platform TV, Web and Mobile services in weather-related information categories under the leading brandsThe Weather Network, MétéoMédia, eltiempo.esand Clima.  The company reaches over 55M users internationally with a focus on North America, Europe and LATAM. It also operates Canada’sNational Alerting Aggregation and Dissemination System (Alert Ready). Pelmorex has evolved to delivering information networks and data solutions to consumers, advertisers and enterprise clients. It launched the Pelmorex Data Solutions Division in 2016 and acquiredAddictive Mobilityin 2017.  Addictive operates mobile-first data management services as well as Digital Sales Platforms.

About Public Safety Canada

Public Safety Canada is the lead federal department responsible for emergency management and coordinates the development of policies and guidelines for public alerting with federal, provincial and territorial stakeholders, as well as private sector partners.

About CWTA
Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) is the authority on wireless issues, developments and trends in Canada. It represents companies that provide services and products across the wireless sector. Representing the industry before all levels of government and various regulatory agencies, CWTA actively promotes the industry with the goal of ensuring continued growth of the wireless sector in Canada. CWTA administers a number of initiatives on behalf of its members, including corporate social responsibility programs and the national common short codes program.