City’s New “Burien Alert” Systems Boots Up, Will Send Out Emergency Alerts

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The City of Burien on Wednesday (Sept. 15) booted up their new “Burien Alert” emergency system, and now residents and businesses have a new way to receive alerts about natural disasters and other emergencies.

“Burien Alert” is a mass notification system that enables emergency officials and other first responders to notify residents via a “reverse 911” type of phone message, text messages, or even email (read our previous coverage here).

According to the city:

The system, which went into effect today (Sept. 15), is intended to notify residents and businesses about significant risks to health and safety. Public safety officials can send alerts about emergencies such as severe weather, floods, utility disruptions or critical police activity. Emergency alerts may be sent 24 hours a day, based on severity. When a number is called, the person receiving the call will be instructed to press 1 to hear the message. The emergency or community alert will follow.

Households and businesses with a land line will automatically receive the emergency alert. The system allows individuals the opportunity to ‘opt-in’ their alternative electronic devices also, including cell phones, work phones, text messages, e-mails, and more. Those with land lines will continue to receive emergency notifications, regardless of whether they opt in with other devices. Those who opt in will receive an emergency notification on their land line or on devices they chose when they opted in.

Residents and businesses can opt in on the Internet beginning Sept. 15 by accessing the Burien Alert button at the bottom of the City’s Web home page at and following the opt-in instructions. People without access to the Internet can come to City Hall at 300 S.W. 152nd St., Suite 300, for assistance opting in. Free computers with Internet access are also available to the public at the Burien Community Center and Burien Library. All information provided will be kept strictly confidential.

General information and frequently asked questions about Burien Alert can be found at, or you can just sign up for Burien ALERT here. Besides choosing how to receive emergency notifications, users also can choose to receive alerts regarding locations of interest – emergencies that may affect a residence, workplace, child’s school or other areas that are within the Burien city limits.

Businesses benefit when their employees opt in because wherever they are, information can be relayed to their employees about local emergencies.

On a personal note, we went ahead and signed up for it, adding our home phone, cell and office phone numbers, as well as two email addresses. We can’t be sure until an emergency strikes how efficiently it’ll function, but if and when one does we’ll do a full-on review of it from whatever bunker we end up hiding in.

And no, we’re not plotting a fake emergency just to test it out.


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