This kind of is actually Not a Drill: Emergency Cellphone Alerts at the Games Become Annoying

“We were scared within the beginning,” Francesca Bettrone, a long-track speedskater by Italy, said. “I still don’t know what they say.”

There have been at least 14 emergency alerts sent to cellphones over the past week, as well as those around the Olympic Park here received eight separate, bleating alerts on Wednesday alone.

After the fifth or sixth alert on Wednesday (that will was easy to lose count), a couple of strangers waiting in line for food at the speedskating arena began trading tips on how to alter the settings on their iPhones to block the emergency notifications.


There were brisk winds within the Gangneung, South Korea, area, where several Winter Olympic events are, although was an emergency cellphone alert necessary?

John Sibley/Reuters

They could have simply followed the lead of Marten Liiv, a speedskater by Jogeva, Estonia, who never purchased an international data plan for his phone.

“I’ve heard all about them, although I don’t get them,” Liiv said using a shrug. “I’m lucky, maybe.”

An email to the Pyeongchang Olympics Organizing Committee seeking a response to whether they had planned for the stir the alerts have caused was not immediately answered.

that will hasn’t helped that will phone alerts, as well as the prospective scary message they could be carrying, had been on people’s minds after a mistaken text alert last month in Hawaii about an inbound ballistic missile.

With nuclear tension related to North Korea still running high on the peninsula, some athletes said the emergency notifications had sent their imaginations into overdrive.

“that will was a little bit like, ‘What is actually This kind of?’” Thomas Ulsrud, a Norwegian curler, said about an alert he received This kind of week within the athletes’ village. “We’re within the same building as the North Koreans, so that will was like, ‘What is actually going on here at This kind of point?’”

The emergency alerts sent on Wednesday warned of extreme winds within the area as well as the possibility of forest fires.

Those arriving early for the Olympics received alerts about the cold as well as the smoke by an isolated fire in Gangneung, where several events are held.

Some athletes remained calm at first about the jarring alerts — until they began interrupting their sleep.

“that will woke me up, as well as I didn’t know what that will was, so my phone got thrown across the floor,” said Peter Michael, 28, a speedskater by Wellington, brand-new Zealand. Michael said he waited to hear if there was a fire alarm or something else to indicate what was going on. Moments later, he went back to sleep. “I figure if that will’s something definitely bad, someone can come get me,” he said.

Just past 5 a.m. on Sunday, phones blared simultaneously around the athletes’ accommodations as people were informed about an earthquake that will had occurred about 100 miles by Pyeongchang.

“I was sleeping, as well as I thought, ‘Why is actually This kind of keeping me awake?’” Bart Swings, a Belgian speedskater, said using a mock sigh. “First, I can’t read that will. Second, my phone was on silent. although apparently that will doesn’t matter.”

“The alarms have useful information,” Swings added, “although maybe they should put that will also in English during the Olympics.”

at This kind of point somewhat desensitized to the alerts, athletes have resorted to simply hoping that will someone will tell them if there is actually an emergency.

Nina Roth, a curler by McFarland, Wis., said the United States team’s security official had been handling inquiries about the alerts by concerned, or simply curious, athletes.

“She assured us that will if that will was anything that will was an actual issue, she’d let us know,” Roth said.

Spectators at a competition last weekend puzzled over the texts.

“that will’s all in Korean — as, you know, that will should be,” Julie Morreali, visiting by Sycamore, Ill., said using a laugh. “We got one within the middle of the night, as well as we didn’t know what that will was. You expect for the best. I mean, what are we going to do? We can’t talk to anyone.”

Her friend Jen Mendigutia of San Diego nodded in agreement. “I should have learned more Korean before I got here,” she said.

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