How to Get Alerts of an Emergency

A disaster could strike at any time, so it’s important to be alerted to the problems in your neck of the woods. Google launched a public alerts program for their Google Maps.

A new feature for Google Maps, which launched Wednesday, allows you to quickly find emergency alerts in your town or around the world.
Called Google Public Alerts, the new feature draws on weather, public safety, and earthquake alerts from federal agencies to supplement Google Map searches. (Read the article at PCWorld.)

The new Google service is available at The program is still growing and perfecting but it’s an awesome addition to preppers repertoire.

You can see more information about the alert by clicking the "more information" link below it. In this case, the link takes you to a Google Alerts page that displays the text of the alert and a local map of the affected area.
Whether or not an alert will appear in the results column depends on activity at a location, severity of the alert, and the wording of the search query.
If you're curious about emergencies outside your local area, you can go to the landing page for Public Alerts. There you can see where alerts have been sounded around the world by allowing your cursor to hover over any orange circle on the map.
When you do that, a summary of the alert appears in a pop-up box. Clicking the circle displays a fixed box with a link to the source of the alert. (Read the article at PCWorld.)

The system also provides information on where emergency responders should go. (Read the Google announcement here.)

There are also a number of other resources that preppers can use to be notified of alerts, disasters or coming storms.

Here are a few:

National Weather Service: The NWS has forecasts, current conditions and maps on their website.
FEMA: FEMA has a number of channels for different regions of the United States. They send out weather and other disaster alerts straight to your phone.
Weather Channel: The Weather Channel has a map which displays tornado, thunderstorm, flood, heat and other weather alerts on their front page. They also announce major activity through their Twitter account.
Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System: This is a great resource for international weather happenings. They notify you about earthquakes, tropical cyclones, and man-made emergencies that could spread internationally. They also have a Twitter account.
The Ready Store’s Twitter Account: The Ready Store has a Twitter account that follows all of these accounts. We try and post the vital news from each of these outlets. Follow us on Twitter and we can deliver this information straight to your computer or phone.

10 thoughts on “How to Get Alerts of an Emergency”

  • James Winters

    Due to Googles new privacy policy I will not be using google at all. Their policy in my belief violates my privacy and as long as I own a computer I will not use them knowingly

  • Steve Wrubel

    Make that three big no, no's for anything Google. They are now just an extention of DHS and and offer programs only to satisfy their need for your information. Beware anything Google, Facebook, Myspace, and so on. Even prepper and patriot sites such as this and most other blogs are monitored. Quite frankly, you can't get three preppers or patriots together for a cup of coffee without being watched by someone. Caveat Emptor!

  • Jill N

    Another vote for no google for all the above mentioned reasons. If you need a search engine, Startpage is the most private option that I've found.

  • Shane is what we've used for almost 10 years.

  • G. Upton

    Psst...if you don't want Google to consolidate your usage on their various sites...don't sign in...or create new logins for each site. And quit whining.

    Thanks for the info on Public Alerts. That will come in extra handy when travelling.

  • Dave W.

    Google is braking the law.And soon will be standing infront of 5 U.S. Supreme Court Judges.
    What they are doing is a FCC violation.

  • Ann

    To Jill N. in regards to if you notice on the search homepage it says enhanced by Google.

  • Laura B.

    I find the uproar about Google's privacy policy rather amusing. Do you really have an expectation of privacy on a medium of communication developed by governments in the first place? Seriously? And that it was "given to the public" out of altruism on the part of governmental/military systems that created it? Google and the NSA have been in strategic partnership since the beginning of 2010 (perhaps even before, but that's when the NSA ... as in National Security Administration ... set up an office in Google HQ). You have no privacy on the internet, and probably never have. It's just that you are probably not doing anything generally harmful or attention-grabbing for the government (or anyone else) to really care.

  • CherylOfTheNorthwoods
    CherylOfTheNorthwoods April 11, 2012 at 2:53 am

    Laura B, I agree 100%!! If you go online on ANY site,you have NO privacy ever again, really. I don't care who's search engine you use, you are out there practically waving your hand.

  • Evil

    Laura B. "You have no privacy on the internet, and probably never have."You got that almost rite, all except the word "probably." You have never had any privacy on the internet, and very little anywhere in this country for a lot longer than the internet has been around. Your credit cards track you and your perches. Your drivers license tracks you. Your phone, both cell and home, tracks you. Everything you buy, car, home, property, even the groceries you buy are tracked. Every bill you pay tracks you. The only way to not be tracked is to not have a birth certificate, a social security card, a credit/debit card, never own anything taxable and never pay for anything with anything but gold, silver, or barter. Even the government currency called the dollar has a # on it so it can be tracked. All the things I've listed were put in place for 1 reason, and that is to track. Privacy hasn't been a part of American life for over 100 yrs.

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