Emergency Alert System to Be Announced in NYC

By Staff | May 10, 2011 | 12:22 PM EDT

New York (AP) - A new national emergency alert system that will send messages to cell phones during disasters will be launched in New York City by the end of the year.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg is set to make the announcement at a news conference on Tuesday.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski said Monday that the Commercial Mobile Alert System will direct emergency messages to cell phones in case of a terrorist attack, natural disaster or other serious emergencies.

The alert plan was approved by Congress in 2006 under the Warning Alert and Response Network Act.

The system also is set to be launched in Washington by the end of the year.