SCIOTO — Starting Oct. 1, Scioto County residents will have access to a mass notification system.
The system is called CodeRED and once the Commissioners sign and approve, the EMA can start loading elements into the system that is used across the country.
Once the app is up and running, it can be downloaded on a phone, tablet, or computer and will alert the device with local issues such as flooding, snow, road closure, boil advisory, gas leaks and much more.
The mass notification system can also be linked to social media and email to get alerts through there as well.
“I took over a year ago and it has been an early goal of mine to have something like this to be able to alert people,” said Larry Mullins, Scioto County EMA Director. “People are tied to their phones more than the TV or radio and we want to stay technologically advanced.”
Mullins said although they will continue to use TV, radio and the news, the main issue is there usually is not someone in the building 24 hours a day like there used to be, causing the word to get out a lot slower if something were to happen in the middle of the night. The app will make it possible for residents to get alerts almost immediately.
“Weather alerts get out pretty fast but let’s say there were to be a chemical spill. There is no fast way to let people know,” said Mullins. “Alerts like that can save people’s lives in a matter of minutes if they are able to take the right precautions quicker.”
The system will send out county alerts. If there were to be an emergency or advisory for a certain area, it will be geo-coded to the specific roads and only give those residents alerts. The app could also potentially warn those who are traveling through the county if there are alerts if they already have the app.
“Although it doesn’t alert me, I can see alerts from all over the country if I get on the app. If others were to travel into the county that already have the app, then they could choose to receive notifications for Scioto County,” said Mullins.
COVID-19 updates will not be one of the alerts covered on the app at first.
“I do not want people to be overwhelmed by a ton of COVID updates and start ignoring the alerts in total as if they are not important. I am in no way saying COVID updates are not important. We would just like to keep the app filled with more things like danger or evacuation and issues of that sort,” said Mullins.
While trying to keep the app balanced, Mullins feels people may end up wanting to get COVID alerts, which will lead to looking into adding that type of information.
The system will help provide a safer community and faster response time for those who have it.
“I want to thank the Commissioners for approving and being on board with the process and understanding it is a good tool to protect and alert those in Scioto County, or anyone who is passing through that has the system already,” said Mullins. “It really shows the Commissioners are truly concerned about everyone’s safety.”
Reach Darian Gillette at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1931, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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