Garfield County’s reverse 911 service has seen little response so far
July 23, 2009
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Since the Garfield County Emergency Communications Authority implemented its state-of-the-art emergency notification system in November 2008, it has not had the amount of people sign up as they had anticipated.
Emergency Communications Authority executive director Carl Stephens estimated the system had a few hundred county residents sign up in November when the system was first introduced. But signups quickly slowed to a trickle, with just a few people signing up each week over the next nine months.
Not until this week, when the Emergency Communication Center mailed out postcards with information urging residents to sign up for the service, did it see another spike in numbers.
“We maybe have had about five or six hundred in the past few days,” Stephens said.
There have not been any upgrades to the system since it was implemented. Besides the company 3N changing its name to Everbridge, all the services remain the same.
Stephens said the recent postcards were an attempt to let people know how to sign up.
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“We were looking for more ways to [inform people], and the mailers would get the most direct response,” he said.
Traditional land-line telephone services from such companies as Qwest are already in the system, according to the mailer, but the service is capable of contacting people at their place of business or by cell phones, and can send alerts to e-mail accounts, cell phones via text messages, or through other electronic devices listed on the site.
Stephens said it’s also important for people to remember to return to the website and update their information if they have recently gotten a new cell phone number.
The system enables the public safety agencies in Garfield County to provide essential information quickly in a variety of situations, such as severe weather, fires, floods, unexpected road closures, or evacuation of buildings or neighborhoods.