Disaster text test

6 Oct 2005

The Dutch government has begun tests of a disaster warning system via text messages. The system allows government officials to send a text message to all mobile phones in a specific geographic area, giving advanced warning of problems such as flooding. The government is working with the three largest mobile operators in the Netherlands – KPN, Vodafone and Telfort – which between them serve around 75% of all Dutch mobile users. A report from AFP says that authorities are paying EUR2.5 million to use the technology over the next two years. Tests are being carried out in the town of Zoetermeer, with future trials planned for Amsterdam and Zeeland.