A fire starts relatively close to your neighborhood, you hear sirens, maybe see aircraft circling and check local media for updates. Or, you hop on social media and read what others post. But, where is the CodeRED alert? Here’s a short explainer what CodeRED is and isn’t.

Opt-in emergency alert systems

Code Red and Nixle (on the east side of Nevada County) are high-speed mass notification systems designed to notify residents in the event of an emergency. We recommend you register to receive all possible alert notifications including: SMS/text, email, landline, cell phone, and TTY.

Neither system will be sending you a notification if there is no immediate or likely threat.

That goes for fires, floods, sometimes PSPS events and, of course, law enforcement incidents.

CodeRED won’t provide you with an update on an ongoing emergency, that’s not its function. Just like you don’t call 911 to find out where the air tankers are going, CodeRED can’t “talk back” or send you generic updates. Tune to trusted sources for updates and maintain your situational awareness.

Nevada County’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) monitors all incidents within Nevada County and activates their Emergency Operations Center (EOC) with trained staff if needs be.

These days, small fires pop up daily and, thanks to the first responders’ excellent work, most of them are contained very quickly – no CodeRED needed.

Next time, if neighbors one street over receive a CodeRED notification and your street doesn’t, don’t feel left out. Simply put, you are simply not a the danger zone at this time.

Pro tips:

Code Red alerts emergency calls will originate from 866-419-5000. Non-emergency alert calls will originate from 855-969-4636. Text messages will originate from 218-350-0131. Please be sure to add all three CodeRED emergency alert numbers to your contacts.  Residents can now text READYNEVADACOUNTY to 99411 to be linked directly to the sign up page. Please be sure to complete your registration at the link texted to you. 

Make sure these numbers are excluded from your do not disturb settings by adding them to your favorites group (iOS) or with exceptions (Android.) You don’t want to miss these calls. Click here to register. If you need help signing up with Code Red please dial 211 or 1-833-DIAL211 for assistance.

Once you have signed up, be sure to optimize Code Red Emergency Alerts for your household.

Do you have more questions? Please see Nevada County’s CodeRED Frequently Asked Questions.

Know Your Zone

New this year is a supplemental tool called Zonehaven that allows for more targeted evacuation notices.

Residents are asked to visit ReadyNevadaCounty.org/KnowYourZone to look up, remember, and document zone numbers for areas frequented in their daily lives as part of their Ready, Set, Go! plan. This could be home, school, work, or the residence of a loved one. In the event of a wildfire or other emergency situation, law enforcement and fire agencies issue evacuation warnings or evacuation orders noting the zone of the impacted areas.


Truckee Police Department and Truckee Fire Protection District routinely provide public messaging and emergency notifications via Nixle to update community members. Click here to register for NixleOPT-IN TRUCKEE AREA NOTIFICATIONS.

The emergency notification systems are designed to alert you to emergencies in your area – they are not designed to provide you information on a fire that does not require evacuations.

Hi-Lo Sirens

Nevada County Sheriff, Grass Valley Police, and Nevada City Police have all installed new sirens on their patrol cars and will only use them for evacuations. Familiarize yourself with the sound and immediately initiate you evacuation plan if you hear it. Nevada County Sheriff’s Office have created a video to help prepare you and your family.

YouTube video

PS: Prep your Go bags, check in with your Five and stay informed.