The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) allows federal, state, local, and tribal authorities to send alerts through different technologies. IPAWS alerts are location specific.
These systems do not require sign-up or registration with NOCO Alert.
Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) – WEA alerts are sent to your cell phone by state and local public safety officials, the National Weather Service, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and the President.
Not all cell phones are WEA capable. To find out if your phone will receive WEA alerts, use the fact sheets below:
Emergency Alert System (EAS) – EAS alerts will interrupt local radio broadcasts and television programming for things such as weather information, AMBER alerts and local emergency incidents.
On Wednesday, March 25th, LETA initiated a countywide IPAWS alert notifying the public of a Stay at Home Order from the Larimer County Health Department. We received several questions about the alert. Here are some common questions we discussed:
1. I was in Larimer County at the time of the alert. Why did I not receive the IPAWS alert?
- The IPAWS system successfully pushed an alert to devices within Larimer County. However, there are several factors that could have impacted your cell phone receiving the alert.
- If you were on your phone at the time, alerts are muted and may not push to your phone even when the call is over.
- You may have alerts turned off on your phone. Go to your phone Settings, Notifications, and scroll to the bottom of that screen to ensure Emergency Alerts are turned on.
- Wireless cell tower could have been at capacity or experiencing a threshold issue and dropped the delivery of the notification to your device.
2. I was NOT in or near Larimer County at the time of the alert. Why did I receive the IPAWS alert?
- IPAWS alerts and specifically the Wireless Emergency Alert pushed alerts out by cell towers. Cell tower coverage can extend beyond our county and if you are connected to a cell tower that serves our County, you could have received the alert but you were physically in another county.
- Some carriers have decided to push alerts they receive in the network well beyond the authorizing county boundary. This is an issue with the wireless carrier and FEMA is working with the carrier to get this resolved.
3. I received the alert multiple times. Why did this happen?
- Per FEMA the issue is with your cell phone. FEMA stated the handset does not recognize you received the alert so the handset will rebroadcast the alert in 12 hour increments until acknowledged.
4. Can I stop the alerts and then turn them back on?
- Yes, you can turn off IPAWS Wireless Emergency Alerts in the notifications setting on your cell phone.
5. When will IPAWS be used?
- When there is an imminent threat to life and when LETA determines the IPAWS system is the proper tool to send a public alert.