What is ALERT CHATHAM/CodeRED?
Chatham County has contracted with Emergency Communications Network, Inc., of Ormond Beach, Florida, for its “CodeRED” high-speed telephone emergency notification services. The CodeRED system gives county officials the ability to deliver prerecorded emergency high-speed telephone notification / information messages to targeted areas or to the entire county at a rate of up to 60,000 calls per hour. This is essentially a reverse 911 system, which can only be activated by designated Chatham county Emergency Management officials, and which is only used for rapid emergency notifications. Chatham County uses the ALERT CHATHAM/CodeRED system to issue alerts for severe weather and other public emergencies. This service will be especially important for those who do not have a smartphone for weather apps.
What Kinds of Emergencies?
The County uses ALERT CHATHAM/CodeRED to alert residents and businesses of public emergencies or to provide disaster-related information, such as evacuation notices, boil water notices, bio-terriorism events, and severe weather alerts. Whenever an alert is activated, you will receive a clear prerecorded message over your telephone or cell phone.
How Else Can I Get Alerts About Dangerous & Severe Weather Conditions?
Several years ago, WRAL-TV released their totally FREE Weather Alert apps for smartphones. You can download the iPhone version or the Android version. You will receive critical weather alerts via voice and push notifications on your smartphone from WRAL and Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel. Your smartphone will “wake up” with alerts and also track your location to warn you wherever you go. Listen to local weather forecasts while you are on the move. Enjoy the power of a NOAA Weather Radio, with all the convenience and precision of a smart phone. GENERAL FEATURES include:
- Precise Location Alerts. This app ensures you receive an alert only if your device or saved locations fall inside a watch/warning box. That means you aren’t disturbed by alarms not relevant to your location.
- Control: You also have complete control over what types of alerts you receive through your app. Pick just the type of alerts you want from a list.
- Follow Me: Follow me is a critical feature if you are on the go. This app will alert you if you are driving in an area when a watch/warning is issued, without you having to do anything.
- Battery Management: This app uses iOS Location Services to strike a balance between location accuracy and battery usage.
- Audio: This app provides audio alerts in the form of beeps followed by a brief description of the alert type
Other Weather Alert Options: For weather-related alerts and warnings, the County advises residents and businesses to rely on weather alert radios tuned to the National Weather Service (NWS) frequencies, weather coverage on commercial radio and television news and weather programs, and on phone, email, or text messaging weather alert services. Some such services are available free (such as phone and text message alerts from The Weather Channel); however, most are fee-based services, such as the popular $8.00/year phone alert subscription from WRAL-TV's WEATHER CALL, which is based on doppler radar reports and can reference conditions in your own immediate neighborhood.
Do I Need to Register for ALERT CHATHAM/CodeRED?
The CodeRED administrator for Chatham County has informed us that if you have landline phone service from a telephone company serving this area, you will be automatically enrolled in the CodeRED system. If, for some reason, you do not wish to be enrolled, you must opt-out by completing, signing, and returning this CodeRED Do Not Call Release Form. If you are unsure whether you are properly registered, click on the large Notification Enrollment banner below and see if you are recognized. If you are not recognized, then create a new registration.
If you have a cell phone and wish to include that number to be notified, your cell number will not be automatically registered in this system. You must register cell numbers yourself. Required information includes first and last name, street address, city, state, zip code, and primary phone number. You must provide your actual street address; do not enter Fearrington Post addresses. To register, click on the ALERT CHATHAM logo below.
If your phone service is either pure VoIP or Cable VoIP, your phone number will not be automatically registered in this system.You must register VoIP and cable service phone numbers yourself. Required information includes first and last name, street address, city, state, zip code, and primary phone number. You must provide your actual street address; do not enter Fearrington Post addresses.To register, click on the ALERT CHATHAM logo below.
This phone system is only as good as the telephone database supporting it. In other words, if your phone number is not in the database, you will not be called. The CodeRED system not only offers faster calling rates and improved message delivery, it also gives individuals and businesses the ability to add and/or to update their own phone numbers directly to the system’s telephone database. Emergency Operations Director Janet Scott emphasizes that this is an extremely important feature. If you register yourself, you must provide your actual street address; do not enter Fearrington Post addresses.
We understand that the County CodeRED system was first activated about seven years ago when a Fearrington resident turned up missing after setting out for a walk from his home to the Pool & Croquet mail kiosk and back. A number of the CERT members who had received the call organized to help find him. He was found -- he had become disoriented and had gone into the woods, fell in the creek and was unable to get up.
If you are not registered with ALERT CHATHAM/CodeRED, please consider doing so immediately. It's easy. Just click HERE and use the REGISTER Link.