When the sirens wail across the country at 11 a.m. on Thursday, the nationwide warning day, it will be comparatively quiet in Frankfurt.

Only at Sanofi in Höchst and at Allessa in Fechenheim will the penetrating tone alert the neighborhood.

Because in Frankfurt there has been a lack of a functioning siren system for many years.

According to the fire brigade, the magistrate intends to set up a nationwide and modern siren network.

The polite message does not mention that the necessary template was completed by the fire brigade five years ago.

Monica Ganster

Editor in the Rhein-Main-Zeitung.

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But sirens can "only" warn, but no more.

So that a loud howling signal does not trigger numerous calls to the police and fire brigade control centers, today radio, electronic display boards and above all mobile phones are part of the information chain to be able to inform the population about an emergency.

First warning on (almost) all mobile phones

The Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance (BBK) will therefore send a warning text via the national warning system (MoWaS) on Thursday at 11 a.m.

In Frankfurt, for example, it will be read out on the Hessischer Rundfunk radio station and shown on Ströer's electronic advertising displays.

If you also have a digital radio (DAB+) with an EWF warning function, you don't even have to have your device switched on, the radio should activate itself at 11 a.m.

Cell broadcast technology will also be used for the first time in order to be able to send a high-level warning message to all mobile phones in Germany.

To all cell phones?

Almost all - because older models or those that have not installed the latest update will not receive a message.

Anyone who would like to find out in advance whether their mobile phone is "modern enough" can check the BBK website.

In addition, the test alarm is also played out via the Hessenwarn apps and its predecessor Katwarn, which are used by around 785,000 people in Hessen.

At 11.45 a.m. the all-clear was given on all channels.

The first nationwide warning day in September 2020 revealed how important test runs of the system are. At that time, the central test warning of the BBK was delayed by 30 minutes.

The head of the authorities at the time, Christoph Unger, had to vacate his post and the authority was realigned.