Telephone-based mass notifications systems are used by thousands of public safety agencies across the US to warn citizens about local emergencies, hazards and other threats. Now Washington County announces that they have selected Hyper-Reach to help bring this same life-saving capability to the area. Hyper-Reach is a state of the art mass emergency notification system designed specifically for public safety. The county expects to have the service fully operational by the end of August.
The new emergency alert system will provide rapid notification of hazardous and urgent situations using a mix of telephone calls, text and email messages, and even TTY/TDD service for the hearing impaired. The system sends thousands of these messages to geographically targeted households in seconds, and can simultaneously deliver them to an even broader audience via social media, as well as sending broadcast messages to most current mobile telephones (made since 2011) in an affected area by providing access to FEMA’s Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system.
“Our job is to protect the citizens of Washington County as effectively and cost- effectively as possible.” said Matt Bierman, Director of the Emergency Management Agency for Washington County. “We reviewed all the major vendors for emergency notification service, and Hyper-Reach gave us everything we needed at an unbelievable price. We’re really excited about this new capability.”
The County plans to use the service primarily for alerts about weather and environmental hazards, criminal activity and missing persons. Landline phones are automatically enrolled for Community alerts, but Weather alerts to landline phones and Community and Weather alerts to mobile phones and email addresses are only included when people enroll. Residents and people who work in Washington County are encouraged to enroll now either by calling or texting “Alert” to (618) 243- 0300 or by going to the website http://hyper-reach.com/ilwashingtonsignup.html.
Citizens can get emergency alerts via their Alexa-enabled smart speakers just by saying “Alexa, enable Hyper-Reach” and following the Alexa-provided instructions. With more than 50 million US households using Alexa devices, there are obviously hundreds of county residents with Alexa units.
Citizens can also download the Hyper-Reach Anywhere app on their smartphone. Hyper-Reach Anywhere is a free smartphone app that allows individual citizens to manage and monitor the alerts they receive, both for their home and office addresses and for other addresses they care about such as those of elderly relatives or friends.
“We’re honored to have been selected by Washington County to provide its emergency alerts,” said Sam Asher, President of Hyper-Reach. “It’s gratifying to be part of an effort to save lives and protect property and we take that responsibility very seriously.”
About Washington County Emergency Management Agency
The Washington County Emergency Management Agency is a 50 year old agency with a mission to protect the citizens of Washington County. Under the direction of Chairman Dave Meyer and the Board, the county provides law enforcement, emergency planning, 911, EMS and other vital services.
Hyper-Reach (www.hyper-reach.com) is a mass notification system with over 15 years of experience in emergency messaging. Hyper-Reach sends messages via automated telephone calls, text messaging (SMS), email, and social media, such as Twitter. Other uses of Hyper-Reach include Amber alerts, toxic chemical warnings, and armed shooter alerts. In addition to 911 centers, Hyper-Reach is used by law enforcement, educational institutions, and corporations.
For more information about Hyper-Reach, go to www.hyper-reach.com or call 855- 266-8439 (855 2-Notify).