Homeland Security to End Terror Alert System

by  Carolyn Balk | Jan 27, 2011
Plane / Biletskiy_Evgeniy/iStock

After nine years of the five-tiered, color-coded terror alert system, United States Department of Homeland Security has decided to officially end the system in late April. Since its establishment several months after the September 11 attacks, critics have ridiculed the five-level system, saying that it was ineffective and too broad to impact U.S. citizens in its intended manner. The ascending rainbow-colored terror alert system, with the lowest level alert being green and the most severe being red, has only fluctuated slightly and has not changed from yellow “elevated” since 2006, creating a discreditable system for many. In its place, the DHS will implement a National Terror Advisory System that will focus on advising defined geographical populations about precise threats. DHS hopes that the new, specified system will help U.S. travelers feel more secure rather than scare travelers with vague terms and colors.

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