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County of Santa Clara and Local Cities Launch AlertSCC, New Countywide
Emergency Notification System

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF.— Where will you be when a disaster
Whether Santa Clara County residents are at home, at work,
their children's softball game or sitting in traffic on Highway 101, the
new regional emergency notification system AlertSCC will enable
residents to receive timely and lifesaving information no matter their
location. Today, the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors, joined
by local city officials, announced the launch of AlertSCC, and
encouraged residents to go to www.AlertSCC.com to register their cell
phones and email addresses.

"This is a monumental day for the 1.8 million residents of Santa Clara
County as we launch our first regional emergency notification system,"
said Supervisor Liz Kniss, President of the County of Santa Clara Board
of Supervisors and Chair of the Board's Disaster Council. "This is a
call to action. Beginning today, residents should go to the AlertSCC web
site to sign up to receive emergency information related to disasters
such as earthquakes, floods, or wildfires."

The County of Santa Clara spearheaded the purchase, implementation and
roll out of AlertSCC to local jurisdictions including the cities of San
José, Morgan Hill, Mountain View, Saratoga, Cupertino, Santa Clara,
Sunnyvale, Milpitas, Gilroy, Campbell, Los Altos, and the Town of Los
Gatos, Monte Sereno and Los Altos Hills.

"The County has led a unified and collaborative effort to ensure that
everyone in Santa Clara County will benefit from AlertSCC," said
Supervisor Ken Yeager, who brought the alert system initiative to the
Board of Supervisors in 2007. "The range and flexibility of
communication options to be offered will keep our residents safe and

AlertSCC is an automated system with the capacity to send thousands of
text and voice messages within minutes to home and business land line
phones using 411 and 911 databases. While the system uses land lines
from the databases, to reach cell phones, PDA's, laptops, desktop
computers, and devices for the hearing impaired, anyone who lives or
works in the county must register their cell phone numbers or email
address at www.AlertSCC.com.

The system can be used for a variety of emergency and community service
notifications such as fires, crime incidents, hazmat incidents,
infectious disease information, contaminated food warnings, road/school
closures, and contacting disaster service workers.

"An emergency alert system may make all the difference in whether or not
residents survive a disaster," said Supervisor Dave Cortese, Vice Chair
of the Board's Disaster Council. "In a natural disasters or hazmat
incidents, time is of the essence, and this tool will allow us to give
our residents urgent warnings."

While no one knows exactly when or where a disaster such as an
earthquake or flood will strike, it's more than likely to cross city
boundaries and encompass several cities in a wide geographic area. For
example, if residents need to be notified of an evacuation, the public
notification system enables the county or local city to contact its
residents in a targeted or countywide geographic area through multiple
means of communication. The system provides the ability to notify
residents anytime or prescheduled in targeted or regional areas and can
be activated by web, phone or satellite phone. Once a notification is
sent, the system tracks results and reports on message delivery
including which messages had a live delivery, answering machine, bad
phone number, busy signal, hang up, fax/modem or undeliverable. The
system has the means to resend the undelivered messages.

"Alerting residents of a disaster and informing them of appropriate
actions is an important, and constantly evolving, government task," said
San José Mayor Chuck Reed. "I encourage all residents to register.
Stay informed. Stay alive."

"AlertSCC is the fastest and easiest way to become better prepared in
the event of an emergency, from natural disasters, to a terrorist
attacks, to violent crimes," said Jeffrey V. Smith, County Executive.
"Registering for AlertSCC may be as crucial to surviving a disaster as
making a family emergency plan and assembling a home disaster supplies
kit, and it only takes a few minutes."

The City of Morgan Hill was the first city to send a public safety
message using the regional AlertSCC system. In late March, there were
several attacks on women in Morgan Hill . The city and County issued a
public safety alert to residents of Morgan Hill and the unincorporated
areas of South Santa Clara County through the notification system,
alerting residents to the incidents and advising them to take extra
precautions in shopping center parking lots.

"AlertSCC proved to be an essential communications tool that enabled us
to notify residents about a local public safety issue, quickly and
effectively," said Ed Tewes, Morgan Hill City Manager.

Through the AlertSCC web site, all residents in Santa Clara County can
sign up to receive the alerts. To register, go to the web site, select
the city you live and/or work in, and provide cell phone and email
address information to receive alerts.

"The City of Mountain View is delighted to be a partner in this regional
effort," said Mayor Margaret Abe-Koga, City of Mountain View . "It is
critical that we strengthen our efforts to improve public preparedness
and response and to do so in a collaborative manner."

AlertSCC will be used to supplement the region's existing emergency
communication methods, augmenting public safety and first responder
services. It will not take the place of the 911 and other communication
and notification systems (such as radio systems) that first responders
currently use.

For more information or to register to receive AlertSCC messages, go to
Last Updated ( Monday, 12 October 2009 07:29 )  

Our valuable member Dan Chapman has been with us since Friday, 20 March 2009.

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