SFO is the First US Airport Approved to Use FEMA’s Public Alert System

Wireless Emergency Alert system can get life-saving information to any cellphone at the Airport

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) is the first airport in the United States with approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to issue Wireless Emergency Alerts, which can issue potentially life-saving information to any cellphone located on Airport grounds.

This industry-leading capability allows the Airport to issue the emergency alerts through the Integrated Public Alert Warning System (IPAWS), a unified platform that integrates multiple alert systems across the nation. With Wireless Emergency Alerts issued through IPAWS, SFO staff can quickly reach airport employees, passengers, and members of the public on Airport grounds to provide critical information in an emergency.

“Safety and security are our highest priorities, and we continue to enhance our emergency response capabilities,” said Airport Director Ivar C. Satero. “Being the first airport in the U.S. approved to issue Wireless Emergency Alerts gives us an important tool to help keep people safe during an emergency.”

With Wireless Emergency Alerts, warnings can be sent to a mobile device without the need to download an app or subscribe to a service. Designated SFO staff have been trained and certified to issue Wireless Emergency Alert information using IPAWS. In the event of an incident, emergency, or situation which requires critical and potentially life-saving information to be disseminated immediately to Airport employees, passengers, and the public at SFO, designated staff will use the system to send a text message, accompanied by an audible alert, to mobile phones in the prescribed area who have enabled “Emergency Alerts” under the “Government Alerts” section of their phone settings.