Hail, heavy winds and torrential rain swept through Floyd County on Wednesday, downing a few trees and causing some localized flooding.
In Adairsville, a tornado touched down, killing one person and causing destruction throughout the small town’s business district.
As officials touted Rome’s new center on East 12th Street, weather maps showed hues of yellow and red indicating where the storms were hitting. A television was simultaneously blaring a weather report from an Atlanta station.
Throughout the room, banners showed where agency representatives would sit in the EOC room in case of emergency, including places for public utilities, public health and law enforcement.
And those who attended the open house got a first-hand look at how it worked as emergency officials monitored the incoming storm.
“It gave a lot of our public officials and the public the chance to see what this room is going to be used for,” said Tim Herrington, deputy director of the Floyd County Emergency Management Agency. “We were fielding phone calls and doing what we do. It’s kind of like controlled chaos.”
The 2009 special purpose, local option sales tax put aside $4 million for the new center, which includes the Rome-Floyd County Fire Department administration and fire prevention offices and a backup 911 center that can be used if 911 operations located at the Joint Law Enforcement complex are disrupted.
And the next time a major storm blows through, the EOC will be ready, Herrington said.
“We have everything in here. We are set,” Herrington said. “We still have some of our equipment that we are connecting up but, for the most part, the EOC is up and ready.”
Link to the storm story