Emergency Services to test notification system as part of earthquake preparation

Don’t be alarmed, this is only a test.

The Sacramento Office of Emergency Services will be conducting a test of its emergency alert system Thursday to encourage more sign-ups and participation in earthquake preparation, according to Sacramento County Emergency Operations Coordinator, Mary Joe Flynn-Nevins.

Thursday marks the 12th annual ShakeOut Day, which encourages people to drill in anticipation of earthquakes. Flynn-Nevins said this should involve practice of the “drop, cover and hold on” technique. The alert will be sent at 10:17 a.m. to coincide with the date and will include Yolo and Placer counties. Residents may register at Sacramento-Alert.org.

“When people receive the test alert Thursday and they don’t recognize the number, they should mark it down as an emergency alert because it may just display as a series of numbers. This way they know it is us when we are calling during an emergency,” Flynn-Nevins said.

This is the fourth test of the emergency alert system since 2015. According to Flynn-Nevins, the system was used to notify locals of flooding in 2017. Other circumstances which may trigger notifications include power outages, earthquakes and extreme weather conditions.

Mitchel Bobo covers breaking news for The Bee and is a journalism student at Sacramento State. He was born on Travis Air Force Base and raised in Vacaville.