A state-wide bulk SMS service is now a reality in Rhode Island.
At a press conference in Bristol, Rhode Island, last week, state officials announced that it launched an emergency alert system that can be used by the county and municipal governments throughout the state.
According to WPRI, the system was first put to test in Bristol during their Fourth of July parade, which they tout as being the nation's oldest. Residents in the area who opted into the service were sent parade-related notifications to help them better enjoy the event.
Public events like the parade aren't the only situations in which SMS messages will be sent out. The system is more geared towards public safety concerns, like evacuation notices, severe weather alerts, boil water notices, missing children postings and active shooter alerts.
"Our goal is to have border-to-border mass notification for the entire state of Rhode Island," Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency Director Peter Gaynor told WPRI.
Even though alerts can go out statewide doesn't necessarily mean that everyone in the state who participates in the service will receive every message. The system is location-based and can be specific down to individual streets, so alerts will only go out to those to whom the information is relevant. That decision will be made by state officials prior to sending out the alert.
The system is available to each of the state's 39 communities to use for their own purposes. WPRI reports that currently 20 municipalities are ready to partake in the alert program, with state officials working to bring in the remaining 19.
Mass text messaging solutions from Swift SMS can help make sure that the appropriate parties receive valuable information quickly and efficiently.