Emergency notification system coming to Warren County

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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- Starting in January, Warren County residents will have a new way to learn about potential emergencies that may impact them.

Warren County Emergency Management officials say by signing up online, you can register for notifications to be sent to your phone.

"We got approved in fiscal court late last Spring to find a public alert notification system," says Melissa Moore, Administrative Specialist and Public Information Officer for Warren Co. Emergency Management.

Warren County decided on a program called "Alert Sense."

Officials say they've been training and working with the system since September.

"We are actually testing it out internally right now and we plan on rolling it out to the public on January 1," says Moore.

Through Alert Sense, emergency management officials say they can get alerts out to the public quickly, regarding anything from weather conditions, to amber alerts, to escaped inmates and information on how to contact police.

Moore says it's simple to sign up to get these alerts.

"These are the business cards that we're going to be passing out to the community," she says, holding one up. "They have a QR code on here that people within the community can scan, and it's going to take them directly to the public sign-up page."

She says several thousand cards will be printed.

"And we're not only going to keep them within our office but we're going to pass them out to the law enforcement agencies, volunteer firefighters, sheriff's deputies, elected officials -- because those are the people that interact with the public the most frequent," she adds.

In addition to signing up through the public Alert Sense website, which can also be found through a quick Google search, you can also go to the app store from a smart phone.

"We have an app available, which if you just go into the app store and type in Alert Sense it will pop up and it will be a red app with an exclamation point," says Moore.

She went through the process of sending a "test alert" with 13 News to show us how the system works. Within seconds, her phone received a text message, an app alert, and a voice call with information about the test.

"You can opt in to what alerts you want to receive. You're automatically signed up to receive alerts from public safety agencies providing advanced warning of life-threatening emergencies," says Moore.

But as of January 1, she says there will also be alerts for things like community events that Warren County residents will be able to sign up for, if they're interested.

Officials say Metcalfe County and Simpson County also use Alert Sense.

According to Metcalfe County Emergency Management officials, they used the system just last week to help locate escaped fugitives.

Warren County Emergency officials say the outdoor alert systems will still be used, but this alert system is a new way to keep up with technology and try to make sure the community is aware of any type of potential disaster or emergency.

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