Police Say No Oklahoma Amber Alerts In 2011

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma authorities say there were no Amber Alerts in the state in 2011, a first since the system for finding missing children was introduced in 1999.

The Oklahoman reports that officials say part of the reason is luck but also that the alert system itself serves as a deterrent.

An Amber Alert is issued when authorities believe a child is in danger of death or serious injury. Only 24 cases since 1999 have met that criteria. Among them, three children died.

When an alert is issued, every law enforcement agency in the state is notified. Digital highway signs display urgent information that is also broadcast by TV and radio stations and Internet news sites.

Officials say such a fast and broad system has child predators thinking twice.