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MN's Blue Alert system is being tested this afternoon. What does that mean?

The system is meant to notify the public when an officer has been killed or seriously injured on duty.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is testing its Blue Alert system on Thursday. So what does that mean and what can you expect?

The Blue Alert system was created by the state legislature in 2015 to alert the public if a local, state or federal officer was killed or seriously injured on duty.

While there have been no Blue Alerts since the system was created, Thursday will be an opportunity for the state to test the system.

According to the BCA, the test will monitor new code from the Federal Communications Commission specific to Blue Alerts. The test will be administered at 1:10 p.m.

The Blue Alert takes the form of:

  • Email and text alerts to media and subscribers of the Minnesota Crime Alert Network
  • A wireless emergency alert on cellphones.
  • A recorded Emergency Alert System message
  • Notices on electronic highway signs, either statewide or regionally

Thursday’s test will not include highway sign notifications.

In order for Blue Alert to be issued, an officer must be killed or seriously injured on duty by an individual who cannot be located. The individual must pose a “serious risk” to the public or other officers. 

This is what the test will look like: 

************ THIS IS A BLUE ALERT TEST ************

If this had been an actual Blue Alert, details of the incident would be included on this alert along with any photos, suspect information, vehicle information and any information pertinent to public awareness and public safety. This is only a test of the Minnesota Blue Alert Plan.

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