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Kennedy Administration Wants Home Alarms for National Emergencies

July 26, 1961 - The Kennedy Administration asked Congress today for $10 million to put into operation a home buzzer system that would give warning of impending nuclear attack. The system is called NEAR, for National Emergency Alarm Repeater. The NEAR system is designed to furnish each home, office and factory with direct warning of an attack. The buzzer is housed in a small black box that could be plugged into any 110-volt home electrical system. When the buzzer sounds, the householder would turn on his radio for civil defense information. Civil Defense officials said that the system would permit the entire nation to be alerted within one minute after the signal from Air Defense Command in Colorado Springs, Colo.


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