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M4S053: Salem Emergency Alert System Panics Residents

Salem Emergency Alert Panics ResidentsIf you’re like me, it is somewhat satisfying when something happens that shows that all of our crazy prepping efforts aren’t so crazy.

Well, this week, I’m going to cover a recent incident that is going to reinforce just how right you are, and how wrong all of the prepping naysayers are. When this episode is over, you’re going to have a great example to point to when people call you crazy. You’ll also have a great example to pass on to those who may be on the fence about becoming better prepared.

Now, it’s important to note, that I and hopefully all of you don’t find enjoyment in others failure to prepare or when adversity knocks them on their butt. With that, though, this article that I am going to read and talk about is just one more example of why it is SO GOOD to be a prepper. Because as we all know it’s not a matter of if something happens, it’s a matter of when.

In this episode:

  1. The Preparedness Experience Event - Las Vegas | March 22 - 24, 2019
  2. The Preparedness Experience Event - In Perspective
  3. What an Experience Opportunity in Las Vegas

Buckle Up!

In this episode, I’m going to talk about a recent incident in Salem Oregon where officials sent out a, not so well thought out, emergency alert notification. Yeah, I know, there is never any issues with the emergency alert system, right Hawaii? Well, buckle up because this incident in Oregon is yet, another example, of why being prepared is so important.

The Preparedness Experience Event - Las Vegas | March 22 - 24, 2019

Now, before we get into the show, I have an awesome announcement to make regarding The Preparedness Experience. Let me preface this by saying that I may be letting the cat out of the bag early, but whatever if Dale and Ryan, my partners over at TPE snooze, they lose. Besides, it’s not like I haven’t stuck my foot in my mouth before.

Anyhow, so what is the announcement? Well, if you’ve been following The Preparedness Experience, you know that we’re planning to host a preparedness event / expo / convention next year.  Well, we’ve finally set the dates and location for the event. So, if you’re interested in going to an event that is more about education, prepper camaraderie, and improving your preparedness and less about vendors selling your junk, then this is the event for you.

So, when is the event? The event will be the weekend of March 22nd, 23rd, and 24th, 2019. Now, wait, it doesn’t stop there. The best part of the event, well the best part besides me getting to meet so many of you, is that this event will be in Las Vegas! Yep, Las Vegas.

The Preparedness Experience Event - In Perspective

Let me put The Preparedness Experience weekend in perspective for you. It’s March, snow is still on the ground. Many of you have spent all winter freezing, trying to keep warm, and dealing with way too much of the white cold stuff. Well, the weekend of March 22nd, rolls around. You pack your bags and jump on a plane to Las Vegas, which happens to be one of the cheapest travel destinations in the United States.

When you get off the plane, the first thing you do is take off your coat, and put on your sunglasses, because that 78-degree sunshine is too much for your winterized self. Next, you catch a quick Uber ride to meet up with a ton of other like-minded, preparedness types of people. Then, you grab your schedule and figure out which preparedness course and lecture you’d like to participate in.

What an Experience Opportunity in Las Vegas

Now, spending the day meeting with other preppers and improving your safety, security, and preparedness, you and a few others try to figure out what you’re going to do for the evening. Well, while myself, Ryan, and Dale are getting things ready for the next day, you could be having a bunch of really awesome preparedness experiences. Maybe you’re out driving a tank over a limousine. Yes, in Las Vegas, you can drive a tank over a limo. Heck, maybe you’re blasting away with belt-fed machine guns, or practicing close quarters battle techniques against an opposition force made up of zombies. How about pinning yourself to the seat as you do laps in an exotic sports car or NASCAR. Now, if none of that amuses you, you can always go see a show, have a great meal, or even drop some of your preparedness dollars into the one-armed bandits around town; personally, not my thing, but hey there are worse ways to pay for your bug out location.

So, anyhow, you get the picture. If you want to learn, improve your preparedness, and hang out with other awesome preparedness types, then mark the 22nd through the 24th of March 2019 on your calendar and prepare for sunshine, warmth, and an awesome preparedness experience. Remember, this will not be a swap meet or gun show disguised as prepper convention. It will be a Preparedness Experience like no others! So, stand by for more updates that will be coming out soon. In the meantime, if you’re interested in going, head on over to and jump on our email list, so you’ll be the first to know about any new updates.

I’m really stoked about this and am looking forward to meeting many of you in Las Vegas.

Now for the article:

Cryptic Emergency Alert Panics Oregon City's Residents

TOM JAMES Associated Press | May 30, 2018

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon's emergency alert systems blasted a cryptic alert to cellphones around the capital city, panicking residents by telling them simply "Civil Emergency" and "Prepare for Action" and leaving off that the threat was toxic algae at a local water supply.

Officials wanted to warn Salem-area residents Tuesday night that elevated levels of a natural toxin caused by the algae bloom had made area tap water unsafe for children and people with compromised immune systems. But that information got cut off, and a more ominous-sounding default message went out in its place, said Andrew Phelps, head of the state emergency management agency.

Officials sent a second message 31 minutes later with more information and a link to a municipal website.

Within hours of the first alert, residents stripped the aisles at one supermarket in the city's downtown center of bottled water, and a shopping cart lay tipped on its side in front of the empty shelves. Workers brought out a pallet of sparkling water, which they placed at the front of the store, and told customers they hoped they'd get more regular water in the morning.

The incident marked a high-profile glitch in authorities' use of emergency alert systems, following a false alarm sent out by Hawaii officials in January warning of an incoming ballistic missile.

In Oregon, confusion surrounded the initial alert even within the emergency management agency, with an official telling reporters the message had caught them unaware and state police asking residents via a Facebook post not to call 911 about the alert.

And when officials directed residents to the city of Salem's municipal website for more information, the site briefly crashed under the load.

"The integrated public alert warning system inadvertently defaulted to a generic message," Phelps said in a video posted on social media by the Office of Emergency Management. "I apologize for the confusion and the anxiety this incomplete message has caused."

Phelps said the message had also been broadcast via local television stations.

Cole Mahaffey, a Salem resident, set down a case of bottled water Wednesday he was carrying down the sidewalk and described the uneasy feeling of seeing the first alert arrive on his phone, with an ominous warning but no other information.

"It almost made me not want to go outside," Mahaffey said, adding that the alert caught him at the gym, and that he had interrupted his exercise routine to ask staff at the front desk if they knew what it was about. "I didn't know if there was something going on in the area, or if there was a shooter, you just had no way of knowing."

Wrap Up

Alright everyone, that’s it for episode number 53. Hopefully, you found it enjoyable and informative. Remember, if you have other examples that reinforce why being a prepper is a good thing, please go to and post your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of the show notes.



Never forget, you’re just one prep away.

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Stay safe, secure and prepared,



Thanks for Listening to This Episode on Salem Emergency Alert Panics Residents

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  1. CrazeeMomma4 on June 18, 2018 at 6:08 pm

    Great podcast. I like the idea of a code via text for the family. I think you need 2-3 levels for emergency.

    Code 1 – be mindful, something is brewing
    Code 2 – get home ASAP, no questions asked
    Code 3 – shelter in place ASAP, send location via text for rescue if needed

    Or something like that. Because of NK we had many talks with the kids about Code 3. Even discussion on what to do by getting in the closest closet at school and securing it.

    This is only effective though if you have electronics working of course. Teach your kids what to do if there is a CME/EMP situation. Thankfully most of the time it still takes awhile for ppl to figure out the lights are not coming back on. EMP close to your area will have a different atmosphere with people’s behavior.

    • Brian Duff on June 30, 2018 at 1:27 am

      Thanks for the great idea Jennifer!

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