FAQ Page

How do I enroll or register?

Initially, all phone numbers listed in the “white pages” were entered by the city into the CodeRed system. However, this database does NOT include cell phone numbers or VoIP-phone (Internet calling) type numbers. Therefore we urge all persons living or working in Cambridge to enter their cell phone number into the CodeRed system along with their home or work address. In this way everyone can be quickly receive CodeRed emergency notices from the City.

For those who are hearing impaired, the online registration offers a TDD ONLY option for tone delivery of emergency messages. Messages delivered to phone numbers marked TDD will only be delivered in a TDD/TTY format.

Online registration

Registration form (print out and mail to: CodeRED Enrollment, Cambridge Emergency Communications, 125 6th Street, Cambridge MA 02142)

What is CodeRED used for?

CodeRED will be used for significant incidents and events where the timely notification of an affected population or geographic area is essential.  Some of the examples of types of incidents or events when the CodeRED system could be utilized include major emergencies, water main breaks or other very large scale utility outages, floods, local hurricane information, disasters, evacuation information, and other emergency alerts

How does it work?

CodeRED delivers messages through a high-speed telephone calling system to some or all phone numbers in the Cambridge CodeRED database.  In an emergency, city staff can quickly access CodeRED via a secure portal on the web; designate the geographic area to which calls will be made, record the message, and launch the calling session. A ‘calling area’ can be a set of street addresses, a radius around a point, a preset area such as a Cambridge neighborhood, or the entire city.  Telephone numbers will be matched up electronically to these addresses through the use of an embedded Geographical Information Systems (GIS).  A pre-recorded message will be sent out via the telephone with information about the incident and possibly instructions for action to be taken. CodeRed can also send text messages to cell phones as well as emails; sometimes a message will be sent only by text message or email and calls will not be made.

What if I do not want to be on the CodeRED call list?

Individuals that prefer not to receive any CodeRED messages can be added to a ‘Do Not Call List’. For example, if you move out of the city but keep your same telephone number, you may want to have your number removed from the Cambridge database. Please call (617) 349-9490 and leave a message with the phone number to be removed and city staff will have it removed.

What should I do if I don’t receive a message?

Your area of the community may not be affected.  In which case, you won’t receive a call even if it’s only a block away. Or, your wired, VoIP, or cell phone may not be entered into the system; if so, go to the Cambridge home page and follow the instructions to sign-up for CodeRed and other notifications. It may also be that CodeRed sent only text messages to cell phones and/or emails about a certain event; thus calls may not be made. Please be sure to enroll your cell phone or email address to get certain messages.

How does it work?

CodeRED delivers the message through a high-speed telephone calling system to a phone number on the CodeRED database.  City staff will access CodeRED via a secure portal on the web.  A ‘call area’ will be marked identifying street addresses.  Telephone numbers will be matched up electronically to these addresses through the use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS).  A pre-recorded message will be sent out via the telephone with information about the incident and possibly instructions for action to be taken.

How will I benefit from this service?

This high-speed telephone system will allow the City of Cambridge to contact participants to provide information about emergency situations.

What should I do if I receive a CodeRED message?

Listen carefully.

Follow instructions.

Don’t hang up until you hear the whole message (the message will not be repeated).

DO NOT CALL 9-1-1 unless instructed to do so (you will only tie up emergency lines).

Note that a CodeRed message may ID differently on your home or cell phone. For example, calls made to your cell phone by the CodeRED system will ID as coming from either 855-969-4636 or 866-419-5000. If you have the ability to designate these numbers in your phone system or contacts database with a helpful label (such as CodeRED or Camb Emerg) please do.

Will the system work with cellular phones?

Yes.  But your cellular phone number needs to be associated with your City of Cambridge street address and you need to enroll your cellular phone number by going to the Cambridge Alert Network at www.cambridgema.gov/AlertNetwork

Contact Information

125 Sixth Street
Cambridge MA 02142

Phone:617-349-6911

Hours of Service

Emergencies: 24/7
Administrative Office: M-F 8:30-5

Cambridge Alert Network

Cambridge Alert Network