Residents need to register with Routt County’s new emergency alert system | SteamboatToday.com

Residents need to register with Routt County’s new emergency alert system

Emergency notifications can save lives, but Routt County needs help from residents to spread the word.

The county has launched a new emergency notification system, and residents need to supply their cell phone numbers if they expect to get notifications.

Residents can register their contact information at routtcountyalerts.com.

"We wanted to make sure it was as easy as we could make it for citizens," Routt County Communications Director Jason Nettles said.

The county previously used the Code Red system. Nettles said there were aspects of it that were cumbersome and inefficient and it had limitations.

The old system cost about $11,000 annually, but Nettles said the county was charged more if it exceeded its allocated number of messages.

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The new system from Everbridge will cost about $12,000 a year and includes unlimited messaging.

The old system had a database of about 13,000 phone numbers.

Nettles said about 7,200 landline numbers were imported to the database, but residents need to provide their cell phone numbers.

Nettles said the county is trying to get the word out through social media and by putting up posters.

As of Saturday, about 450 new numbers had been provided.

"The Everbridge emergency notification system allows Routt County to disseminate this information across all types of devices, ensuring residents have access to real-time public information when they need it the most," Routt County Emergency Management Director David "Mo" DeMorat said.

The Everbridge system will allow Routt County Communications to set up groups that target specific people, such as county employees or certain emergency responders.

Everbridge will also be integrated into the national emergency alert system, which means Routt County will be able to push out messages on television, radio and cell phones, similar to how Amber Alerts are currently disseminated.

"It's pretty flexible," Nettles said. "We're pretty excited about it.”

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

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