Angelina County, Lufkin invest in emergency notification system

Angelina County, Lufkin invest in emergency notification system
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - It was just eight months ago when car after car, tire after tire, drove on the loop tracking tar, just days following Hurricane Harvey. That lesson on its own and several others set an example for officials to find a solution.

"Take for instance the issues around the loop. That might have been something we could have warned motorist about and could have urged them to stay off of the loop when we were having all those asphalt issues," said Sid Munlin, a City of Lufkin information officer.

During Tuesday's Commissioner Court meeting, Angelina County and City of Lufkin will move forward to purchase a module to add to the Everbridge notification system. The system will allow government officials to send out alerts.

"One of the basic issues is how do you warn folks because we live in a very transient age," Munlin said. "So everyone has a cell phone, and every cell phone has to be registered to a tower, but not every cell phone is registered to an emergency notification system."

Munlin said because the cell phones are registered to the towers, an alert can be pushed to cell phones of those people within that area.

"We've probably needed it for a while, but it's just the opportunity now has come available to us," said County Judge Wes Suiter after the court unanimously approved.

Both agencies will invest in the $9,000, splitting the costs and they will divide the $2,000 annual recurring cost.

"(Hurricane Harvey's) a good example because we would have reached people who were traveling as well as residents," Munlin said.

The wireless emergency alert will send warnings to any mobile device to people in harm's way, without having to download an app. In the next two to three months the system will be added on.

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