Warning plan tested with Lord of the Rings

May 18, 2011 4:28:31 AM PDT
Hungary's disaster management agency is testing the country's emergency broadcast system with warnings of severe storms in Middle-earth, the fictional setting of J. R. R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings." Messages broadcast Wednesday mostly on state radio and television are warning Hungarians about floods and catastrophic weather in Gondor, Rohan, Rivendell, Helm's Deep and other locations inhabited by Hobbits, Orcs, Elves, Ents and Dwarves.

Officials say they chose Tolkien's fantasy world because they don't want to alarm people by mentioning real locations in the test and want to gauge how effectively the emergency messages reach Hungary's youth.

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