Alberta's new emergency alert system is facing criticism from some people who say it’s too hard to understand.

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Phased implementation of Alberta's new emergency notification system began on June 28. (Government of Alberta)

The province introduced the Alberta Emergency Alert (AEA) system in June. It uses digital technology — including social media sites — to notify people about natural disasters, severe weather hazards or possible child abductions.

But the computerized voice that delivered a recent alert about a missing child was too hard to decipher, according to Brian Pshyk, who works at Mount Royal University’s production department.

Municipal Affairs Minister Hector Goudreau — who heard the alert on his own car radio — said his department is working to make the messages clearer.   

"There's no doubt it's a little bit of a staccato voice. But typically with alerts we expect people to pay a little bit more attention than just background music or background sounds," he said.

Goudreau said it was decided to use a digitized voice because it’s quicker than recording a real person.

"We'll keep on working on improving the tone, the pitch of the automated voices," he said.

Pskyk said the warning system sounds like a computer spelling game he had in the 1970s.

"There is better software that translates text to speech a whole lot better," Pshyk said.