National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reaffirms Erie County preparedness; Erie remains sole WNY county to receive designation
Erie County has again been recognized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service as being "StormReady," confirming Erie continues to meet a stringent set of storm warning reception and information dissemination criteria, enabling prompt identification of potential weather hazards as well as speeding distribution of necessary warning information.
Erie is again the only Western New York county to receive the designation, which is effective through 2019. Across New York state, there are 44 StormReady sites, including 25 counties, nine communities, two government/military sites, eight universities, and 13 supporters. The closest StormReady counties to Erie are Monroe and Livingston.
"Erie County's Department of Emergency Services works tirelessly to train, educate, prepare and assist communities and individuals in developing resiliency plans in the event of severe weather, and is vigilant and ready as weather approaches," Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz said. "As individuals, families, neighbors and communities, it is essential that we do all we can to plan for our safety as well as the safety of others, including pets. To again receive the Storm Ready designation is a credit to this department, along with the departments of health and public works, and underscores the value and necessity of preparation for severe weather and all that it could entail."
Commissioner of the Department of Emergency Services Dan Neaverth Jr. added, "The key to successful completion of the StormReady program requires a dedicated, community-oriented staff, an ongoing working relationship with the terrific folks at the National Weather Service, and direct public outreach. The StormReady program epitomizes the need for collaboration during disaster preparedness and response."
StormReady is a nationwide community preparedness program that uses a grassroots approach in helping communities develop plans to handle local severe weather. In order to be recognized as StormReady, communities must establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center; have more than one way to receive severe weather forecasts and alert the public; create a system to monitor local weather conditions; promote the importance of community preparedness through public seminars; and develop a formal severe weather plan.
As of Dec. 1, there were 2,557 StormReady and/or TsunamiReady sites in 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Pacific Islands. This includes 1,194 counties, one borough, 21 parishes, 895 communities, 198 TsunamiReady sites/counties, 18 Native American nations, 98 military sites, 38 government sites, 204 universities and colleges, 123 commercial sites, 739 StormReady supporters, and 13 TsunamiReady supporters.
Earlier this year, Erie County unveiled the "Ready Erie" app, available for free and designed for the iPhone, iPad, Android and iOS systems. Among other uses, the multipurpose app allows users to receive critical information and emergency alerts through push notifications, locate Erie County's emergency shelters, view up-to-date evacuation route maps, and create a personalized emergency preparedness plan by answering five basic questions.
The app can be downloaded from the Erie County website at http://www2.erie.gov/ under the "Online Services" tab.
For more information:
On the Erie County Department of Emergency Services, visit