For Immediate Release
February 5, 2013
Contact: Sonya Lopez-Clauson
Greater Harris County 9-1-1, PIO
832-237-9911 or 713-806-9495 (cell)
HARRIS COUNTY, FT. BEND COUNTY, AND CITY OF HOUSTON JOIN GHC 9-1-1 IN MAJOR NEW STEP TO INSURE PUBLIC SAFETY
Residents Must Register Wireless Phones Online to Receive Emergency Alerts
New, “next generation” technology can now send localized emergency alerts to cell and Internet phones,
but only if residents register their phones online at www.911.org. Residents who rely on cell or Internet
phones for communication, will not be contacted if a local emergency occurs unless they register—
currently only landline (home or work) phones are in the 9-1-1 alerting system. The alerting service is
free. Only phone owners’ standard talk and text charges will apply if and when they receive an emergency
All Houston-area media are urged to make this important announcement immediately and to continue it for
as long as possible. GHC will provide additional information and graphics upon request.
Registration is Quick, Easy, and Free.
Those who want to receive alerts can visit 911.org and click the sign up button (left). They will be
guided through the process to complete the form, and will be offered answers to “frequently asked
Information needed to register: name, address (must be within GHC service area), phone number, email
address. Information is used only by public safety agencies to alert residents.
How the Service Works
Examples of “localized” emergencies include hazardous material spills, dangerous persons in the area,
missing persons, or life-threatening weather.
This service is provided by GHC 9-1-1 to all public safety agencies (fire, police) within the
jurisdictions in the GHC service area. (http://www.911.org/participatinjursidictions.asp) The
agencies/jurisdictions decide when to send an alert and also decide which people in their service areas
need to know about the emergency. Residents will not receive an alert if they are not in the affected
area. The service is a supplement to (not a replacement for) public safety warnings and information
conveyed over TV, radio and other services.
“It is important to have every tool in place to reach our community in the event of local emergency,”
said GHC 9-1-1 Director Lavergne Schwender. “GHC 9-1-1 wants to ensure that our jurisdictions have the
ability to contact residents on whatever type of phone they are using.”
Registration website screen shots, alert icon and video demo can be found at: