The Water Cooler – Amber Alerts

February 13, 2014 12:00 pm · 20 comments

The “Water Cooler” is a feature on where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it!

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon!

Today’s question:

When an Amber Alert comes across on your phone, or when you see it on the computer, on the tv or hear about it on the radio, do you pay attention, or do you just dismiss it? If you don’t dismiss it, do you tend to pay more attention to it if it’s in the Bay Area?

Also, do you think they could make any changes to the Amber Alert system to make it more effective?

Talk about it….

Anon777 February 13, 2014 at 12:09 PM

I do pay attention and if I’m out on the road, it makes you more aware of cars around you.

The weird thing with the last Amber Alert on my phone (iPhone) was that I could see the truncated alert on my screen, but when I tried to read it, it disappeared. I was with several others who also got it and their Alert went into their Messages where they could read it as a text. I had to Google and read many help questions before I could figure out how to find where these are stored in the iPhone. To find them: on your home screen, swipe down from the top. What then shows up appears to be a calendar with Today / All / Missed across the top. Click on Missed or All and the alerts can then be read.

Stewart February 13, 2014 at 12:10 PM

I do pay attention to them and I try to pay attention when I’m driving around, though I know my chances of seeing anything are virtually zilch.

As a parent, having my child abducted would be my worst nightmare so I figure the least I could do is pay attention when Amber Alerts go out.

The Mamba February 13, 2014 at 12:12 PM

I definitely pay a lot more attention if it is in the Bay Area.With all the different media sources we have these days, it is very easy to get the details quickly. If it is a stranger abduction, I’ll be on the look out; if it’s a family custody dispute tldr.

Julio February 13, 2014 at 12:25 PM

We do pay attention but with this last one for some reason immediately we felt there was something wrong with the story.

Glad no one was hurt.

Kirkwood February 13, 2014 at 12:38 PM

I try to pay attention if nothing is going on around me and the information is quickly readable. I can remember license numbers up to 3-4 letters/digits. If the vehicle is a silver or white Honda or similar, forget about it. The signs on 680NB between Monument and Marina Vista, Martinez are poorly located because of all the off/on ramps and lane switching going on.

Bottom Line Gal February 13, 2014 at 12:38 PM

I pay attention to all Amber Alerts, especially in the Bay Area. You never know where you might run into the vehicle they’re looking for, even if the chances are slim.

As far as changes to the system, I’ll leave that up to the experts. Law Enforcement and Marc Klass. They know what they’re doing.

Ted K., Supermax February 13, 2014 at 12:40 PM

I applaud the alert if it’s an illegal alien(s) heading to Mexico. Good riddance and I hope they make it.

Otherwise it’s a mental note to be on the lookout.

Btw, the changeable freeway signs the other day said “HELP SAVE WATER” or something like that. Is that an appropriate use of these roadway signs? I mean, it’s not roadway or even relate to public safety.

Momo February 13, 2014 at 12:43 PM

I do pay attention and It does not bother me that this was a false alarm. Rather be too safe than too sorry.

anonanonagain February 13, 2014 at 1:01 PM

I’m glad to see that so far all the comments people have made say that they pay attention to these Amber Alerts. I would hate to think that people would ignore a message sent out about a possible child abduction. I know that if my child were ever in that situation that people would do anything in their power to catch the culprit ASAP….

Anon2you February 13, 2014 at 1:10 PM

As a parent, I never dismiss it!

Dorothy February 13, 2014 at 1:14 PM

I don’t get them on my phones, either cell or land-line. I do try to pay attention when they come up on the news. With travel so easy, by the time most of us are aware the people could be out of state or country. So even when they are for other areas I still try to pay attention.

Like Julio, this last one did have something about it that was somewhat off.

Idiocracy February 13, 2014 at 1:25 PM

I think that if any of these kids have a phone and are taken then the phone providers should have a quick response at tracking them Via GPS and report the position ASAP to the police. I always pay attention to these amber alerts.

J. February 13, 2014 at 2:11 PM

Amber Alert statistics: There have been something like 225 Amber Alerts and 275 children returned safely.

Pretty good odds.

I pay attention.

Gargoyle Socks February 13, 2014 at 2:22 PM

The most recent Amber Alert was the first one I ever received on my phone…first ones>/u> I received. The alarm scared the crap out of me when it came in. I had the same problem as Anon777, which I found irritating. (Thanks for the tip, Anon777!)

So, it was hard NOT to pay attention, but yes, I have always paid attention to Amber Alerts, especially those for the Bay Area. This week’s was a particularly bad of example of an otherwise good thing.

Grumpy Old Man February 13, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Never dismiss it…I would run in front of a vehicle if it meant saving a child’s life. I also have two very close friends (Mr. Smith and Mr. Wesson) who feel the same. ANYONE bringing danger to a child should be shot on sight!

Harvey T February 13, 2014 at 4:14 PM

OI do pay attention and only try to remember two things. The color of the car and last three numbers on the plate. Anymore and you forget

Always Pay Attention February 13, 2014 at 4:25 PM

Amber alerts have saved childrens’ lives…it was a shame the last one was a false alarm, but better safe than sorry. Much harder for evil doers to get away with kidnapping someone’s innocent loved ones these days.

VikingPrincess February 13, 2014 at 4:41 PM

You really don’t have much of a choice unless you stay off the freeway, no phone, no cell phone, no TV. My cell made the sound that televisions make to test emergency broadcasting. Was quite a shock and would make anyone take notice. It was loud 😉
Yes I think they are important. I do think they are doing fine as long as they continue to problem solve parameters related to qualifiers for identification of what an Amber alert is. Also, as long as it works.

TinFoiler February 13, 2014 at 8:28 PM

If it’s abused it will be dismissed by everyone. Notice the “Amber Alert” Sign
680 Northbound near Willow Pass currently says something about Saving Water.
The sign is fine for traffic conditions/ detours etc and Amber alerts.
But the Sign says something about Saving Water.
PS: Stupid BS about saving water has NO business there – It’s a Roadway hazard that serves NO purpose on the Freeway.

GoodIdea February 14, 2014 at 10:41 AM

I pay attention to all of the Amber Alerts. I thought it was a great idea when it came into being. Very glad and appreciative of this information.

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