CLEARFIELD – During emergencies every second counts.
And so, the rapid dissemination of accurate information is a critical necessity for those in local communities.
Whether it’s a travel alert, missing person or criminal event, residents of Clearfield County can get emergency information at their fingertips.
But they must sign up for these community CodeRED notifications, Matthew Savard, deputy director/public safety, said Tuesday.
CodeRED is a cloud-based software solution that has been trusted by government agencies since 1998 to provide real-time information.
It has the capability to send routine and emergency notifications via multiple channels (e-mails, calls, texts, etc.) simultaneously.
The system’s alerts can be location-based, which targets residents and visitors specifically being impacted by emergencies.
Or they can be disseminated to all county residents with a CodeRED account.
Examples include a missing person, evacuations, natural disasters, boil water advisories, travel alerts and shelter in place/lock downs.
Public safety officials can utilize CodeRed for major criminal events like prison escapes but only upon request from the officer in charge.
When residents sign up to receive these notifications, they will select their delivery preference(s) (call, text, e-mail etc).
The system has the capabilities to communicate emergency messages to those who are hearing impaired, Savard noted.
Residents will also have the option of whether or not to include or exclude inclement weather alerts from the National Weather Service.
Currently the county has roughly half its population—or 35,000 to 40,000 residents—signed up for CodeRED.
Most reside in the DuBois area, but the county does have countywide use of the system and hopes to grow those numbers even further.
Public safety officials are strongly encouraging their local emergency managers to help them spread the word.
They will also have posters in local grocery stores and post offices to reach the county’s more rural communities.
There is no enrollment cost for residents, Savard said, adding “it’s great to have.”
A registration link is found on the Clearfield County 911 Web site and Facebook at Clearfield County 911/Emergency Management Agency.
CodeRed also has a robust mobile app that’s available for download on both the Apple and Google Play stores.
Public safety officials recommend residents utilize the county’s CodeRED community alert system as well as the app.
Because emergency notifications are often location-based, residents will not receive them outside a specific geographical area.
But if they would enter that area later on, they would automatically be alerted by the mobile app, Savard said.
CodeRed is widely-used nationally by 10,000 counties, cities, towns and villages and may be advantageous to residents while traveling.