Public Alerting in Ontario


Fact Sheet

Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services


How do you make sure you know about an emergency situation as soon it happens?

Ontario’s Emergency Public Warning System is a tool that provides timely and accurate information during an emergency. There are three types of warnings - Red Alerts, Emergency Information Advisories and Tornado Warnings.

They provide quick information on what’s happening and what to do to protect yourself and your family. You can receive them by RSS feed, SMS text messaging, e-mail, Facebook and Twitter.

What’s the benefit of subscribing to Ontario’s Emergency Public Warning System?

The warnings reach Ontarians quickly and updated as the situation changes. The information includes actions to keep you and your family safe. .

The warnings also complement community emergency management programs that may include public alerting mechanisms, such as automated phone calling, in-home tone-alert radios and sirens.

What are the differences between the Red Alerts, Emergency Information Advisories and Tornado Warnings?

Red Alerts

The province issues a Red Alert to provide recommended immediate actions to protect citizens, their families and others when there is an imminent threat to life, public safety or property. Each Red Alert includes a brief description of the event, its location and recommended actions to keep you and your family safe. Some situations in which a Red Alert may be issued include:

  • Large fire or explosion
  • Chemical leak or spill
  • Nuclear emergency
  • Transportation accident

Emergency Information Advisories

The province issues an Emergency Information Advisory to provide information to Ontarians about current or evolving emergency situations or events. Advisories may recommend protective actions to take.

Tornado Warnings

The province distributes Tornado Warnings through a partnership with Environment Canada, which issues these warnings. They contain information on what Ontarians can do to protect themselves.

To sign up for Red Alerts, Emergency Information Advisories or Tornado Warnings, please visit

For any inquiries, please contact us.