[StBernard] St. Bernard President Craig Taffaro gives weather prep update: Citizens should register to get emergency updates

Westley Annis westley at da-parish.com
Sat Sep 3 14:39:07 EDT 2011

St. Bernard Parish President Craig Taffaro gives update on preparations for
bad weather

Residents should register to get emergency updates to land and mobile
phones, emails and pagers

St. Bernard Parish President Craig P. Taffaro, Jr. said he wants residents
to know that parish crews are continuing preparation work, and officials are
in constant communications with the National Weather Service and surrounding
key agencies to monitor the current weather situation.

"We are asking residents to help us indentify any trouble areas since we
have literally miles of road construction underway. As this system stalls,
this could present us problems in the eastern end of the parish where we
could have water over the roadways, and we want those residents to carefully
monitor the weather and the media updates," Taffaro said. "Although the
integrity of our levee systems is better than it ever has been, "we don't
want people to use that as an excuse to not go through their individual
preparation plants. Internally we have some hot spots where water may pond
with the heavy rains."

Currently, St. Bernard Parish is operating at full drainage and pumping
capacity. Drainage canals have been pumped down to add additional storage
capacity, Taffaro said. Public works crews are in the field making any
necessary preparations and pre-staging additional pumps for trouble areas.

The St. Bernard Emergency Operations Center opened as of 9 a.m. Friday and
will remain on partial activation into the weekend, pending the course of
the weather. Taffaro said residents may contact the parish Emergency
Operations Center with any specific concerns regarding a construction or
road site at 278-4268.

Residents should secure any loose items around their homes, and they should
survey their neighborhoods and pick up any loose and vegetative debris that
may cause obstructions to the drainage catch basins.

Taffaro said now is a good time for residents to register with the parish's
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.

These alerts will go 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 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 504-278-4268. You must provide the name of your cell provider when
registering for FirstCall.

Residents should stay tuned to local media for updates as well as frequently
checking the website at www.sbpg.net.


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