CNET reports that iOS 6 includes the ability to receive U.S. government alerts via push notifications during an emergency or disaster.
The new feature allows users to receive alerts from local, state, and federal officials through the initiative FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. Users can also receive Amber Alerts - a child abduction alert issued upon the suspected abduction of a child.
The National Weather Service is also expected to start issuing Wireless Emergency Alerts by the end of June, which means that users will be able to receive weather related alerts on their iPhones.
According to folks at Emergency Management who were the first to notice this new feature report that it will be available on all iOS devices that are compatible with iOS 6. As you can see in the screenshot below, you will get an option to opt out via the Settings app. There will be toggles to enable or disable Emergency alerts and Amber alerts.
In iOS 5, Apple had added the option to receive notifications from Japan’s advanced earthquake early-warning system.
It makes sense to add support for such emergency alerts in iOS and other mobile operating systems as the chances of us seeing the alert on our mobile phones is a lot higher than hearing it on radio or TV, which have been traditionally used to communicate such emergency alerts.