DeKalb EMA director explains lack of storm alerts - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

DeKalb EMA director explains lack of storm alerts

The Alert DeKalb system integrates cellular towers, of which there was an outage during the storms. The Alert DeKalb system integrates cellular towers, of which there was an outage during the storms.
DEKALB COUNTY, AL (WAFF) -

A new weather warning system in DeKalb County was the target of ire from some residents, after they said they did not get any warnings during last week's severe storms. However, it has now been determined the system was not at fault.

The system utilizes cell phone towers, and officials said there was an outage of about 14 towers during that time. Overall, however, emergency management agency officials are pleased with the new Alert DeKalb system.

It experienced problems when it was initially rolled out in February during severe weather. Many residents reported having numerous calls every time there was a lightning strike.

Since that time, EMA officials have restricted system calls to just tornado and thunderstorm watches and warnings. However, when such warnings were issued last week, some residents were not given calls due to the downed towers.

According to officials, other residents who reported not receiving calls were not in the actual warning area, residing just outside the polygon warning area indicated by the warning, which they said is a good thing.

"The weather service has gotten very specific about those locations, and that's what we're trying to get people to think about," said DeKalb Co. EMA Director Anthony Clifton. "When a warning is issued for your area, it really means your area. We are not talking about a countywide thing anymore."

Clifton said you can customize your warnings to receive as few or as many as you want. If you live in DeKalb County and would like to sign up, you can contact the county EMA office or register online.

Copyright 2014 WAFF. All rights reserved. 

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