Emergency broadcast alert test in Reading on 29 June 2021

Author's position
RBC Strategic Communications Manager
Article date
23 June 2021
Primary interest
Voluntary sector

The UK government is introducing an emergency alert system system using mobile phones. In the event of a flood or nuclear accident etc, the government and emergency services would have the ability to send a push message to mobile phones in a geographic area using cell broadcasting towers (i.e. not through phone networks) to warn the public about danger and advise how to stay safe. 

The system is being tested in Reading

Reading is part of a pilot of the system and will have a live public test on Tuesday 29 June between 1 and 2pm. At that time on that day, many people in Reading with a modern mobile phone that is switched on could receive a message, and their phone will ring and vibrate even if it is set to silent. This will happen even if they are driving, in a classroom, in a funeral etc. It is based on location, not residency, so it will affect everyone in the area, even if they are just passing through. The message will appear on the home screen of the phone looking something like the image below.

Please help spread the word to people who might not see the news reports

We are asking you to make people aware of the test – especially partners or service users who might not see the news reports, and who might be confused or frightened by receiving the alert. To help you raise awareness, there is a pack of resources from posters to social media posts that will help you get the message out.

Download the toolkit here
  • The toolkit explains what is available for each channel (online, print etc) and in the bottom left corner of each page there is a link to download the assets.
  • Digital and social assets are on pages 6/7 (web banners, social media posts), page 8 has printable assets (leaflets, posters, etc), and translations in Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Hindi, Indian-Punjabi, Nepalese, Pakistani-Punjabi, Polish, Romanian, Slovak, Somali and Urdu on are on page 9.