Home Front Command emergency drill
Home Front Command emergency drillIsrael news photo: Flash 90

The Homefront Command is set to test its early warning system for attacks on Monday. Officials stressed that the tests had been scheduled “far in advance,” and were not being conducted in response to any specific situation.

The exercise will be conducted in a cities in central Israel, including Rosh Ha'ayin, Elad, Petah Tikva, Lod, Modi'in, Shoham, the southern Sharon region, and the Modi'in Belt area. Residents and workers should expect to sirens, IDF vehicles racing through the streets, and increased presence of police and soldiers around town.

In addition, for the first time, Israel will be activating its Emergency Warning System.

Like in the U.S., officials will break into broadcasts on radio stations serving the center of the country to make announcements on emergency procedures, situational updates, and other matters. Several web sites will also be “taken over” in this manner, presenting information about the emergency. In addition, a new cellphone messaging service will broadcast messages to all phone users within specific areas.

Officials said that they were increasing the number of personnel at emergency hotlines, anticipating an increase in calls by panicked citizenry who are likely to believe that a real emergency is taking place.