Residents of Bulloch and two adjacent counties will soon have up-to-date emergency notifications at their fingertips.
The City of Statesboro and Bulloch County are partnering to “implement the CodeRED system, a high-speed emergency notification system,” said Bulloch County Public Safety Director Ted Wynn.
The program is provided by OnSolve, based in Ormond Beach, Florida.
“The platform will allow officials to communicate with residents and personnel by sending telephone calls, text messages, emails, posts to social media and mobile app messages to inform residents of emergencies and better protect life and property,” he said.
Candler County has used the CodeRED system for a while now, and Evans County is also coming on board. Both counties’ 911 system is operated by Bulloch County 911.
“Public safety officials across the United States have credited CodeRED notifications for saving lives, including locating missing children, apprehending wanted criminals, and issuing timely evacuations,” Wynn said. “The CodeRED system will serve as the backbone of local government’s emergency planning and communications outreach.”
The system was selected for its reliability and accuracy, as well as its widespread usage across North America.
“CodeRED’s robust system will provide local officials with a reliable, easy-to-use technology to enhance our emergency preparedness plans,” he said, adding that he anticipates officials using the system to notify residents of law enforcement emergencies, weather situations, missing persons, drinking water emergencies and more.
Board of Commissioners’ Chairman Roy Thompson said he welcomes the partnership between the City of Statesboro and Bulloch County in delivering this emergency notification service to all residents.
“I know this system will be a great benefit in all aspects of emergency warning for our citizens,” he said.
Bulloch County sheriff’s Lt. Greg Collins said CodeRED “will allow the Sheriff’s Office to notify residents and businesses about emergency situations.”
The system might be used regarding “severe weather situations, power and other utility outages, missing or lost persons, fires, floods, evacuation notices, major roadway hazards or closures, chemical spills, gas leaks, significant criminal situations, and various other emergencies that may arise.”
Messages can be sent to either specific geographical areas or the entire county, he said.
City officials are equally excited about the system.
“It is very important we provide for the well-being and safety of our citizens and communicate with our citizens and constituents during emergency situations,” said Statesboro Mayor Jonathan McCollar. “It is an efficient way to distribute emergency and general information which needs to be conveyed” to all residents.
The system will enable word to get out faster.
“Public safety agencies often have difficulty getting real-time information to the public during emergencies,” said Statesboro police Chief Mike Broadhead. “CodeRED will help us contact specific neighborhoods, or county-wide residents and businesses, to inform them of pending or ongoing emergencies. It will also allow us to ask specific neighborhoods for assistance in locating missing children, et cetera, thus increasing our chances of quickly locating missing people.”
All residents living within Bulloch County and all cities are encouraged to visit www.statesboroga.gov, www.bullochcounty.net and the Facebook pages of Bulloch County Public Safety/EMA, the Statesboro Police Department, the Statesboro Fire Department, the Bulloch County Fire Department and the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office for a link to register, Wynn said.
Once on the sites, click on the CodeRED logo to enroll using your cellphone numbers, landline numbers and email addresses.
Residents can also text the keyword BULLOCH to 99411 for a link to the registration page.
“No one should assume they are included in the emergency contact database; please visit to ensure you are registered,” he said.
CodeRED also offers a free mobile app for Android and iPhone devices. All residents and business owners are encouraged to download the free app to receive alerts based on the geo-location of your phone.
“As you travel throughout other CodeRED communities, you can receive important alerts that include community, emergency, and severe weather information,” Wynn said.
Both city and county agencies will be discontinuing the current Nixle alert system, so residents are urged to sign up for CodeRED, he said.
Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.