by Staff Writers
Philadelphia (UPI) Aug 3, 2012
The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency is trying to refine its weather alert system so that cellphone users not at risk do not get scared.
In Philadelphia, a "severe alert -- flash flood warning" message Wednesday went to many people far from the nearest creek likely to rise, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. While the few people likely to be at risk undoubtedly appreciated the message, others did not.
Many newer mobile devices include the feature, which became active in April. FEMA officials say it provides warnings at times when many people may not be keeping an eye on the television news.
The Joplin, Mo., tornado last year hit on a Sunday afternoon, while a recent violent windstorm that devastated parts of the Mid-Atlantic region arrived late at night on a weekend.
Damon Penn, a FEMA official, said the agency is working on narrowcasting the warnings. But he said the agency does not want to make it too narrow because some people may be driving into danger.
"This is all about saving lives," he said.
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Queen, politicians, Nobel winner named to UN social panel
United Nations (AFP) July 31, 2012
UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday named a queen, a former president, a Nobel Peace prize winner and a corporate mogul to a 26-strong panel to recommend new global social and environment goals. Ban has given the panel a year to draw up what he called "a bold" new development vision to put to the 193 UN member states to replace the Millennium Development Goals after 2015. Presidents Susilo B ... read more
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