Too many alerts? You can opt out

Published 6:40 pm Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Adams County is sending out more Code Red alert announcements in recent months than the county did in the past. Code Red is an automated telephone call that warns people who have signed up for the service of potential weather threats, such as tornadoes, flash floods or boil water notices.

Such alerts are vital to public safety and health and are no doubt the kinds of calls people who signed up for the Code Red service expected to receive when they signed up. In recent weeks, however, recipients have been receiving calls alerting them to such events as free face mask distributions conducted by the city and county and even a U.S. Census count event held recently at the Adams County Safe Room.

Those are not exactly the types of alerts many people thought they would receive when they signed up for the Code Red alerts and in the past the county would not send out such alerts because of the cost to the county for sending such alerts.

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Now, however, Adams County is under a new contract with the Code Red service that was bought out by another company a few years ago.

The new contract offers the option for lower level alerts to be sent out and the contract is at a cheaper rate than previously because of changing technology and business competition.

If you have signed up for the service and do not want the lower level of alerts for community events, etc., go to the emergency management agency’s page on the Adams County website at and login to your account or delete your account and reregister for the Code Red alerts.

When working through the registration process you will have an option to opt out of the “general” alerts and thus will only receive true emergency alerts.

We are not opposed to the general alerts but understand some people might not want to receive them, in which case we advise you to opt out.

After all, the original intent of the service is to alert people to potentially life-threatening events and receiving other warnings of lesser degree might desensitize some people to the service’s original goal.

As Bradford has said, though, opting out of the general alerts might make you miss some messages about roadwork or other community events you might otherwise not know about.