County recognized as ‘Storm Ready’

Tue, 03/11/2008 - 3:46pm
By: The Citizen

Fayette County recently was recognized for once again being designated a “Storm Ready” community.

To be recognized as “Storm Ready”, a community or county must meet criteria established jointly between the National Weather Service and state and local emergency management officials. These criteria include:

• Having a local 24-hour warning point and an Emergency Operations Center;

• Having multiple ways of receiving NWS warnings;

• Being able to monitor local weather/river conditions;

• Having multiple ways of alerting the public;

• Promoting public readiness through community seminars and presentations.

• Having a formal hazardous weather plan;

• Having trained weather spotters;

• Conducting periodic drills / exercises; and

• Interacting with the supporting NWS office.

A presentation was held as part of the scheduled meeting of the Fayette County Board of Commissioners. Making the presentation was Mr. Lans Rothfusz, Meteorologist-in-Charge of the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Peachtree City. Also in attendance were Commission Chairman Jack Smith, Vice Chairman Herb Frady, Commissioners Robert Horgan, Eric Maxwell and Peter Pfeifer, Interim County Manager Jack Krakeel and Interim Public Safety Director Allen McCullough.

In May 2001, Fayette County became one the first six counties in the state to receive the designation of being “Storm Ready”. The county is required to re-submit the “Storm Ready” application every four years.

The essence of the program is to ensure the entire warning and response system performs properly when severe weather strikes. The "system" is comprised of the NWS, which issues the warnings, local emergency management personnel who ensure the warnings get communicated and respond to severe weather damage, and the residents of the community who respond properly to the warnings. When each part of this system performs well, lives and property are saved, officials said.

“Storm Ready” designations recognize those counties in which the system is most likely to perform well.

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