WENS program to help bring alerts to your phone


TAYLOR COUNTY—Being prepared for a weather disaster is one of the first steps to ensure that people and property stay a little safer. Grafton and Taylor County entities have teamed up to help provide residents with a faster, more convenient way to receive emergency information.

Overseen by Harrison-Taylor Emergency Services, the Wireless Emergency Notification System is able to put crucial emergency alerts right in the hands of residents on their smartphones.

“The Taylor County Alerts Emergency Notification System will help residents stay up to date on emergencies, events and severe weather,” revealed Ebony McGill, who has been working with Grafton and Taylor County agencies on the project.

Although the program is new to Taylor County residents, surrounding counties have been using WENS and have had success with it, according to McGill.

“It is very simple to sign up to receive notifications, and those notifications can be tailored to each participant,” shared McGill. “Residents can sign up through Taylor County’s official website, WVCountyTaylor.com.”

Once the webpage is accessed, simply click on “Sign Up for Alerts!” on the menu bar. A pop-up screen will appear with the official WENS form, where individuals will input their name, phone number(s), email address(es) and physical address.

When residents sign up for Taylor County Alerts Emergency Notification System, they can choose what kind of alerts they would like to receive, as well as to what telephone numbers or email addresses.

Participants have the option of adding more than one phone number or email address and can even register their spouse or children to receive information including the weather alerts, imminent emergencies and public safety warnings.

Some of the alert options include weather warnings such as blizzard, tornado, severe thunderstorm, earthquake, severe cold or severe heat warnings.

Residents will also be able to receive notifications about parks and recreation; traffic and road closures; general information about events and emergency notices specific to Taylor County including boil water advisories and the like.

“You must register to take advantage of this system. This is a free service provided by Taylor County; however, normal message fees may apply,” noted McGill. “To receive text messages to your cell phone, your cell phone must have text messaging capabilities.”

McGill, who was brought onto the project through the Harrison County Office of Emergency Management, revealed that numerous city and county agencies are already on board with the program and have been trained how to properly use it and that others will be trained in the near future.

Notifications are contingent upon cell phone and email providers, and Taylor County cannot guarantee notifications will be received by the intended recipient. Participants can opt out of receiving alerts at any time.

By registering, users will not receive unsolicited calls, and neither Taylor County nor its system vendor sells the contact number database.

So, log on to WVCountyTaylor.com today and get signed up to receive important information and alerts, right to your cell phone!

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