Emergency Responders Prepare for Inclement Weather

By: Estephany Escobar Email
By: Estephany Escobar Email

ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, Va.--- Emergency responders prepared for the storm on Sunday, before the call volume increases due to inclement weather.

The Rockingham County Fire and Rescue Chief Jeremy Holloway called every station in the county to make sure it has plenty of staff on hand.

"For the Emergency Medical Services, they have to transfer to the hospital. It is longer transport times to the hospital. Therefore, if they get multiple calls, they are not able to answer as many calls. Have to have more staff in and make sure they can answer more calls," said Holloway.

He said it is important for crews to respond to more calls while being safe. Therefore, there are chains firefighters can put on their tires, if the area gets more then three inches of snow or if gets ice.

Fire and rescue crews respond to their regular fire and EMS calls. However, they will also respond to wrecks, downed trees and power lines.

Neighbor Curtis Cash said he is concerned about trees near his home.

"I am always concerned with those things blowing and falling. It makes me sweat," said Cash.

However, he is not worried about losing power.

"I had an electrician fix my box up so I could hook up a generator," said Cash.

Neighbors in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County can be notified about an emergency through the Emergency Alert System.

"They are already aware that the storm is coming, they are aware that we have some icy roads and things like that but if we do get large power outages into areas..we may put it into play," said Holloway.

However, Holloway said the alert may only reach a small number of people. Only 3,500 cell phones or email addresses are registered in both Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.

Even though 95,000 landlines are registered, Holloway said it is important to register another device in case power goes out.

To sign up for emergency alerts, go to http://www.hremergencyalert.com/

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