ATLANTA, Ga. -- A state-of-the-art community alert system has been approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to warn Boone County citizens of potential emergencies.
The approved project will cost $94,950, 75% funded by FEMA with the remainder provided by the county and state.
The multifunctional system is dubbed "the Communicator" said John Copenhaver, FEMA regional director, in making the announcement. The new central transmitter, to be located in the Boone County Emergency Management Office, can be programmed to contact people by phone, fax, and radio, as well as using traditional outdoor warning sirens.
Bill Appleby, Director of the Boone County Emergency Management Agency explained that the new system has a unique "ring-down" component designed to reach-out to area residents in emergencies. "Think of it as a "reverse 911" system, where central dispatch can call out to each commercial and residential phone in a major emergency, instead of the other way around," Appleby said.
"This will provide systematic alert coverage for all Boone County residents and businesses, Appleby added. "The capabilities of this new technology, added to our current outdoor warning system, will just about complete our all-hazard goal of providing county-wide emergency notification coverage, whatever the cause."
The project also incorporates more traditional means of transmitting disaster information Copenhaver said. "Over 35,000 calendars will be prepared and distributed, putting survival information in every home and business in the County. This assures that citizens will have a copy of the emergency action information they need to use whenever the alert system is activated."
FEMA has spent almost $20 million in Kentucky for hazard mitigation measures during the decade of the 1990s.