Officials to residents: Be prepared for severe weather season
Published 12:13 am Sunday, March 12, 2017
NATCHEZ — With the spring severe weather season kicking into gear, Adams County Emergency Management officials want residents to be prepared.
Emergency Management Director Robert Bradford said the weather can be unpredictable from February to June in the area. During that time clear skies might be on the horizon one day, but then the next day many storms could move through the area.
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While a tornado has not struck Adams County yet this season, Bradford said he wants residents to be ready in case one does hit.
“The main thing is to be prepared and have a plan,” Bradford said. “In the event you have to evacuate, make sure everything is ready to leave if you need it.
“If you have weather radios, be sure they are on. Also, stay tuned to the local (media) and listen for the sirens during severe weather.”
Bradford said he also encourages residents to sign up for Code Red. While Bradford said he understands many phones push severe weather information, Code Red ties the information to a specific location, Adams County.
“Don’t only rely on the sirens, as you can have the warning come right to your cell phone,” Bradford said.
Code Red can come as a call, an email and a text message, Bradford said, and is free to sign up for. To sign up, visit www.adamscountyms.net and click on the emergency management page within the county departments tab. A link to the Code Red system is on that page.
Bradford said all the severe weather sirens are functional now, but that he is concerned about one on Foster Mound Road. Bradford said the siren is sounding, but woodpeckers have damaged the pole to the point where he is worried a storm could easily knock the siren off the pole.
Bradford said the red-cockaded woodpecker is an endangered species, and the county has to proceed carefully.
“With that much damage on the pole, if it started spinning to sound off and the wind catches it, it would be easy for the head to snap off,” Bradford said. “That’s the main concern.”
Bradford said if the siren were blown from the pole due to the damage, the head would likely be damaged and would cost approximately $6,000 to replace.
Everything included, Bradford said a siren costs approximately $25,000.
Bradford said the county is hoping to get a new pole donated, but has a quote on a pole at an approximately cost of $3,000.
Bradford said because the woodpecker is an endangered species, all the county can do is protect the pole from the woodpeckers, so he would install a wire mesh screen around the new pole.
“You don’t want to disturb their nest,” Bradford said. “They are an endangered species and you just have to protect the pole.”