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Early warnings saves lives

Much of the Natchez area was likely groggy during the day on Thursday after early morning wake-up warnings from cell phone messages and the sound of tornado sirens.

Most residents were likely asleep when the sirens were activated and alerts from the county’s Code Red system began waking residents to pending weather dangers.

The good news that came to light when the sun came up Thursday was that despite significant damage to a number of houses, cars and trees, the area was mostly spared significant injury.

Lucky, blessed, spared or just well-informed — no matter how you couch it, the area came out of the potential disaster in far better shape than we likely would have if we did not have such means of early warning. Significant advances in weather forecasting and technological advances that allow emergency management personnel to alert residents are both life-savings changes.

When people gripe about government spending, let’s remember that some government spending — particularly in emergency response, weather forecasting and early warning of danger — is often money well spent.

Many thanks go to the hardworking men and women of both the National Weather Service, state and local emergency management agencies and first responders.

Their work and diligence is most appreciated after weather disasters such as the one that skirted parts of our area Thursday morning.

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