News Item Details
Register to Receive Severe Weather Alerts from Botetourt County Emergency Services
Botetourt County Upgrades Emergency Notification System to Include
Automated Severe Weather Alerts and Enhanced Self-Registration Page
Fincastle, VA – Botetourt County residents can sign-up to receive automated severe weather alerts via the County’s enhanced self-registration online web page. Residents are strongly encouraged to sign up for the free service, which provides fast and automated notice in the event of dangerous weather situations, such as the dangerous and destructive storm experienced on June 29th.
The weather alerting feature automatically notifies registered individuals immediately after the National Weather Service (NWS) issues an alert. Individuals register to receive weather alerts via the Botetourt County enhanced online sign-up page by providing their address, phone number(s) and selecting the alerts they wish to receive: severe thunderstorm, flash flood and/or tornado.
The online registration process is user-friendly and takes no more than a few minutes to complete. If you have already registered your contact information with the county you are not automatically registered for severe weather alerts. It is imperative that folks understand that they must opt-in to receive these alerts. Residents who live on a hill may choose not to receive flash flood warnings, but we strongly recommend that everyone sign up for tornado and severe thunderstorm warnings.
How to Register:
- Visit www.botetourt.org/government/safety.php click on the Register Online button.
- Create an account using an email address (or access an existing account).
- Residents enter their name, address and up to two phone numbers.
- Based on the address provided, a map will appear with a symbol showing the user-designated location. The registrant will be asked to verify the location and move it if required.
- Residents can enter up to five additional contacts under their account, such as parents, siblings, or spouses.
- Residents select which weather alerts they’d like to receive. Choices are severe thunderstorm warnings, flash flood warnings, and tornado warnings.
- Registrants can log in to the registration website at any time to add or update their contact information, as well as to opt in or out of notification services.
The new severe weather alerting feature is tied in with the county’s existing emergency notification system, which has been in place for over 3 years and has been utilized on multiple occasions to assist in notifying the public of impending emergencies. Botetourt County originally purchased the emergency notification system from Columbus, Ohio-based Twenty First Century Communications. The system allows county public safety officials to send time-sensitive, targeted messages to select groups and geographic areas.
The basic contact database includes all residential and commercial landline phone numbers. Citizens are encouraged to register additional methods of contact, such as cell phone numbers, VoIP numbers, and email addresses by visiting www.botetourt.org/government/safety.php.
Residents who do not have Internet access or need assistance with registration may call the Department of Emergency Services (540-473-2098) or register in person at its office, located at 205 N. Roanoke Street in Fincastle (in the Public Safety Building).
For more information, contact
Andrew Moore, Botetourt County Dept. of Emergency Services