Public safety communication involves the acts of delivering critical information to fellow agencies in an effort to share information and coordinate effective incident response. Additionally, it includes providing timely event details to residents and community members to help ensure their safety.
According to FEMA, in 2016 alone there were 103 disaster declarations and a total of 823 from 2010-16. The type of incidents that caused these declarations ranged from chemical spills, wildfires to large scale events like Hurricane Matthew. Being able to deliver critical event information through an emergency notification system that allows for simple resident opt-in and a multi-modal approach can help save lives. With less than 50% of households having a landline, a well thought out public safety communication plan that can combat this problem is essential to ensuring resident safety.
“The system, which we have named TorranceAlerts, is very customizable to the individual so we are not overwhelming them with an abundance of non-emergency messages. We encourage all residents to register and opt-in at TorranceCA.Gov/TorranceAlerts. Depending on their preferences, residents can receive Everbridge notifications on anything from street sweeping and water conservation, to library services and building code issues. Residents can also stay engaged with the community through our TorranceAlerts Twitter and Facebook handles as well.”
“Everbridge allows us to refine notifications so that they only target the areas affected by the weather warnings. Upon receiving notifications from the National Weather Service, all sirens within the county are activated regardless of the actual location of the bad weather. Using Everbridge, citizens know that if they receive a warning message on their cell phone, land line or email, they are in the “hot” zone of where the storm is likely to occur.”
“We have found that Everbridge is an invaluable tool that allows us to stay connected with community members and rapidly communicate critical information to them when necessary. Before Everbridge, we relied on a less powerful notification service, and it took us two to three hours to send a message to 5,000 people. Using Everbridge, we have notified 10,000 people in less than 15 minutes.”