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County, city partner to protect assets

By Caitlin Rickard crickard@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 17, 2015 at 6:22 PM

A new interagency cooperative partnership is set to protect the county and city assets during weather emergencies.

Through the joint efforts of the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office and the Lebanon Emergency Services Unit, a new Lebanon/Wilson County Emergency Coordination Center was formed recently to monitor and coordinate area disasters.

The center is located inside the Lebanon Public Safety building on Sparta Pike, and according to Christopher Andrews, is for weather operations to monitor and report severe weather so that decision makers in the city and county can better prepare schedule to protect things like vehicles, buildings and other assets.

Andrews said volunteers staff the center and consist of radio, public safety and radar operators. He said the weather team sends briefings to county and city department heads, monitors weather and coordinates with personnel to ensure assets and officers stay safe during and after a storm.

“This is a special kind of weather monitoring center that will help better protect the city and county,” Andrew said. “We’ll monitor and brief stakeholders in the county on what’s going on with the weather and what to do with our resources.”

According to Andrews, the center was first activated Feb. 20.

“This is a good program and it takes being ready to prepare for the worst,” said Lebanon Mayor Philip Craighead. “It’s combining assets to get the job done.”

The new center, however, is not intended as a means to provide the public with weather warnings.

“I want people to know this is not a public notification system,” Andrews said. “The number one way people can stay in the loop with the weather is through a working and programmed NOAA Weather Radio and by subscribing to WEMA Nixle alerts.” 

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