Union County Setting up Emergency Mass Notification System

Anna (AP) – The sheriff in Union County in southern Illinois say he soon plans to have a phone-based mass notification system to alert citizens of local emergencies. The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports that Union County Sheriff Scott Harvel hopes to have the system set up by the end of the month. He says residents could receive alerts about severe weather, fugitives, missing children or seniors or school lockdowns. He says the system the county has chosen allows officials to send notifications to specific geographic areas, down to street level. Residents can choose to receive notifications via email, text message or phone call. Harvel says he doesn’t anticipate residents will be overwhelmed with alerts because the system is meant for emergencies. The service costs $5,000 annually.