Irene Helped Improve Jefferson's Communication
Officials brought in the Honeywell Alert system after storm hit township last August.
After the devastation that was Hurricane Irene one year ago in Jefferson, including closed roads, power outages and a dam break that caused a temporary evacuation for some residents, township officials decided that an improved communication system was needed. And so came the Honeywell Alert system to Jefferson Township.
The system was up and running in early March of this year, and so far 1,526 residents and businesses have signed up, according to Ed Mangold, deputy coordinator of the township’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM).
“Each time we use it we get more signing up as word is spreading how the system is working. We are receiving positive feedback about it,” Mangold said.
The township uses the system to spread the word about any emergencies in town, including road closures, power outages and upcoming events that may cause traffic tie-ups.
“So far we have sent approximately 20 messages, sticking with our plan that only high priority messages go out via phone and email, and lower priority messages go out only by email,” Mangold said.
Residents can also sign up for email notification about town recreational events and other non-emergency happenings, Mangold said.
The Honeywell system costs the township $11,000 per year for the first three years of service. After that period the township will negotiate a new contract.
While there have been alerts regarding power outages and road closures due to downed trees, the township has not had a storm of the magnitude of Irene since the Honeywell system has been in place.
Residents may sign up for the Honeywell system by visiting the township web site. Those without a computer may contact the township at 973-697-1500 for assistance on setting up an account.