“The purpose of today’s theme is to encourage families to update their plans,” said Tim Herrington, deputy director of the Floyd County Emergency Management Agency.
According to the Georgia Emergency Management Agency website, www.ready.ga.gov, the communications plan should include a specific meeting place for family members in case of an emergency.
Herrington added that families should also double-check emergency supplies, making sure there are fresh batteries in flashlights and that weather-appropriate clothing is easily accessible during a severe storm warning.
NOAA weather radios should also be purchased and have fresh batteries, as they alert residents to severe weather in their area, he added.
Herrington also advises locals to sign up for the free Code Red Weather Warning system through the link on the county and city’s government website, www.romefloyd.com. The system calls all registered phone numbers within an area under a severe weather warning.
For those without weather radios, there may be some available soon since the Floyd County EMA received 1,300 in December through a federal grant.
The first 300 vibrate and are equipped with a strobe light. Those units will go to local residents who are deaf or hard of hearing.
“We are coordinating with the Georgia School for the Deaf to get those radios out to the ones who need them,” Herrington said.
Of the remaining 1,000 radios, some will replace worn-out units at “critical facilities” like hospitals and schools, Herrington added, while others may be given to the public once required paperwork is completed.
“We have to make sure we are in compliance with this specific grant,” he said.
The Rome News-Tribune will be spotlighting emergency preparedness tips each day in conjunction with Severe Weather Awareness Week. Here’s what’s coming:
Sunday: Severe Weather Awareness Week
Today: Family preparedness
Tuesday: Thunderstorm safety
Wednesday: Tornado drill
Thursday: Lightning safety
Friday: Flood safety