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Longboat Key Wednesday, Mar. 2, 2016 5 years ago

Town expands its emergency notification service

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Residents can sign up to receive additional alerts from CodeRed, such as tornado and severe weather alerts.
by: Jack Short Staff Writer

After a tornado struck Sarasota in January, many people realized how much difference a few minutes can make.

Since 2006, the town of Longboat Key has used CodeRed, an emergency communications system, to notify people in certain areas that they need to boil water, beware of gas leaks, or evacuate for a hurricane. But now Longboat is expanding that service to allow residents to register for notifications that will be immediately relayed from the National Weather Service about emergencies that demand immediate action.

Longboat expanded the program at a cost of $1,250 annually, to be added to the previous total, $5,363. There is no cost to residents for the service.

There are approximately 11,000 people in the CodeRed database, according to Susan Philips, assistant to the town manager.

“We had a tornado alert from (the National Weather Service) that came at 2:45 in the morning,” she said. “and in a tornado situation, minutes count. We were looking for a way to address that.”

She said residents must go the town’s website and use the links to re-register, even if they are already in the database, to receive the expanded service. If they do nothing, no changes will be made to their current service.

Residents can choose to receive alerts by phone, email, or text.

If anyone has any difficulty, Philips said, they are encouraged to call her at Town Hall: 941-316-1399

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