« American Airlines cancels 850 flights | Main | Analysis on diversity. »

FCC approves emergency text-messaging

The FCC approved a new nationwide emergency text messaging system Wednesday, according to CNN. Cell phone users will get text messages of certain emergencies said FCC spokesman Robert Kenny.

The plan calls for the FCC to create a federal agency that will both create the messages and pass them on to cell phone companies. Participating cell phone companies will then relay those messages onto its users. After the agency is created, participating cell phone companies will have 10 months to comply with the new requirements.

The new system will alert participators in the event of three types of emergencies.

1. A disaster that could jeopardize the health and safety of Americans, such as a terrorist attack. In these types of disasters the president would usual put the country on national alert.

2. Imminent threats, like a hurricane or tornado.

3. Child abductions or amber alerts.

So far, four major cell phone carriers have opted to join the plan. Mobile, Verizon, Sprint Nextel and AT&T all said they would join the program. Individual users of those companies will most likely have an option to unsubscribe from the service as well.