Westley Annis westley at da-parish.com
Mon Aug 1 19:40:39 EDT 2011


Notifications sent to landlines, cell phones, and pagers

St. Bernard special needs residents eligible for evacuation assistance but
annual registration is required

St. Bernard Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness
is asking residents to register with its Emergency Notification Service
Provider, FirstCall. The FirstCall Emergency Notification Service can
immediately deliver emergency alerts to citizens and first responders. It
gives St. Bernard Parish the ability to provide the community with
important, timely information about hurricanes and other high profile events
occurring in the area.

This is done using an Emergency Notification Service to landlines, cell
phones, SMS text messaging devices, email and pagers. Mass numbers of
residents can be alerted with important information in five minutes or less.
To ensure you receive these emergency notifications to your home phone, cell
phone, email, or SMS texting device, residents must sign up for the service.
Residents can now register on line at www.sbpg.net <http://www.sbpg.net> on
the top right hand side of the Department of Homeland Security page. This is
the direct link: https://alertregistration.com/StBernardParish/. Also they
may call the office at 504-278-4322 or 504-278-4236. You must provide the
name of your cell provider when registering for FirstCall.

Additionally, as we approach the height of the 2011 Hurricane Season, St.
Bernard Parish President Craig P. Taffaro, Jr. is again calling on residents
and businesses to begin their individual preparation plans for sheltering in
place as well as evacuation plans. For those instances that will have
residents remaining at home during an approaching storm, it is important for
people to have non-perishable food and water for at least four days,
batteries for radio or a portable television, a plan for required
prescription medication, and an outside the parish contact to communicate
individual status to loved ones. In an evacuation plan, it is important that
individuals have a plan of an evacuation location, transportation plan, a
plan to carry important documents, medications, and contact numbers for
family. Also, familiarizing oneself with the contra-flow plan and
requirements will allow for better planning and ability of our residents to
get to where they desire to travel.

"We have again worked out an agreement to allow for residents to evacuate
with parish assistance," Taffaro said.

There are several tiers for this assistance, one of which being the need to
identify those individuals who are medically needy and transportation needy.
To meet this assistance, we are asking individuals to please contact our
Emergency Operations Center at 504-278-4268 or 504-278-4322 to register as a
medically needy or transportation needy individual. While St. Bernard Parish
does not offer any guarantee of responsibility for such assistance, we will
do everything that we can to provide assistance to needy residents. However,
it remains the responsibility of each individual to address their needs
prior to an approaching storm.

It is important that residents register with the St. Bernard Office of
Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness if they have special medical
needs and need evacuation assistance as well as those lacking reliable
transportation to evacuate. Those needing assistance must register annually.
To register, call 504-278-4322, 504-278-4268 or 504-278-4236.

Once you call the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness to
let them know is assistance is needed, the parish will send you the
necessary forms which must be completed and returned to the office.

St. Bernard also has its Special Needs Forms and instructions on our
website, http://www.sbpg.net. Click on the Download Form and Instructions
flashing ribbon on the right side of the screen, then click print. Read the
follow the instructions carefully when filling out the form. Incomplete
forms will not be accepted. Please follow up by calling the office after you
fill out a new form and forward it to the Office of Homeland Security and
Emergency Preparedness at the following address:

Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness

8201 W. Judge Perez Drive

Chalmette, LA 70043

ATTN: Special Needs Registration

In order to be eligible for this program you must process a valid ID or
driver's license. If you do not have a valid ID or driver's license you
will be processed by the St. Bernard Parish Sheriffs' Office for
identification purposes.

Those with Special Needs would include two categories:

1. Residents who require a degree of medical care that exceeds that of
the general population, such as the disabled, the infirmed or those who are
electrically dependent.

2. Residents who do not possess the resources necessary to evacuate
themselves or their families and who would therefore require assistance in
evacuation and or sheltering. These individuals will be picked up by bus,
registered and transported to a shelter outside of the Parish.

Residents registered with the program would be evacuated in the time period
of 60-54 hours before tropical force winds make landfall on the Louisiana
coastline, according to David Dysart, Director of the St. Bernard Parish
Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness and Acting Chief
Administrator Officer.

It is important that Special Needs residents pre-register with the Office of
Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness to ensure transportation. "If
you do not have transportation, we need to know about it," Dysart said.

It is your responsibility to listen to the public service announcements
which will give you specific directions, as the hurricane approaches.

Once the parish hits the 40-hour mark prior to landfall, the parish will not
be able to provide transportation and people will have to find another means
of getting out of the parish.


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