Greece became the first country in Europe last week to acquire Google’s innovative earthquake alert service for Android devices.
Launched last August in cooperation with the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and ShakeAlert, Earthquake Alerts detects the initial P waves generated by seismic activity in any given area and then sends an alert out to users in that vicinity, giving them time to get to a safer location or position.
Between 1,000 and 2,000 earthquakes are reported in Greece every year, accounting for almost half the seismic activity on the European continent. Android users who do not want to be alerted of an impending tremor can switch off the service, which sends a loud alarm to cell phones and other mobile devices.
Google has also expanded the service to New Zealand which, like Greece, does not have an early-warning system for earthquakes.