When it comes to providing safety to any municipality there is never an effort too great if it saves at least one more life.

Hoping to do the best possible in any urgent situation, Garvin County E911 and GC Emergency Management have taken their community communication services to the next level through text messages, according to E911 Coordinator Doug Walling. Using an online program through a company called Nixle, residents will now be able sign up to receive high alert notifications for free through their cell phones.

Walling originally saw it first tested as a way to allow emergency responders from police to fire departments mass texting communication between each other about a month ago. In the last two weeks the public version has been tested and is now working so people don’t have to seek this information out every time.

“We can get the information out a lot quicker,” said Walling. “It’s good solid information that goes out to the public in a timely manner... What better way to get that information out.”

This basically allows the county to notify people in any of the towns when an emergency arises from weather advisories to missing persons like Amber Alerts and crime alarms, said Walling. Signing up is instantaneous and all one has to do is type the town school mascot to 888777 with the option to be notified up to five communities.

In other words, for those in Pauls Valley they would sign up with Panthers, those in Stratford would type Bulldogs, those in Paoli would type Pugs, those in Wynnewood would type Savages, those in Maysville would type Warriors, those in Lindsay would type Leopards and those in Elmore City would type Badgers, said Walling. To keep it from being used too much, it would not be a daily thing, but only when something really important needs to be sent out.

“It’s a tried and tested program,” said Walling. “It’s easy to opt in and out.”

To make sure people know it is coming from the right people, every message sent will be identified as coming from Garvin County 911.

GC Emergency Management is also on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/GarvinCountyEmergencyManagement and E911 can be found at http://www.facebook.com/GarvinCountyE911

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