1. A child is known by law enforcement officials to have been abducted
2. The abduction occurred within 12 hours of initial activation of AMBER Alert
3. The child is under 17 years of age
4. Law enforcement must believe the child is in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death
5. There must be enough descriptive information to believe that an AMBER Alert will assist in the
recovery of the child.
6. The missing child must be entered into NCIC
Once that information is gathered by law enforcement, it gets put into a web portal, and from there the Department of Health and Welfare's State Communication Center gets the AMBER Alert out in minutes.
"We also turn on the dynamic message signs, those are the signs on the state highway system that says AMBER Alert. We also activate the emergency alert system and that's the system that interrupts your television and radio broadcasting with the amber alert information," Carreras said.
As for the text message notifications, they are the only form of alert not issued locally. They come from the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children, which may explain why they come in at various times.
"I got it on my phone, my daughter got it five minutes later then we were in our backyard and we heard our neighbor's phone go off," says Carreras.
Regardless if you get the text message several minutes later than others, Carreras said if you have emergency notifications turned on, you will get them.