Emergency Planning Council Meets

Local agencies from the Sheriff's Department to the Air National Guard were on hand Wednesday morning at the Lauderdale County Emergency Management Agency to share ideas and also establish working relationships.

David Sharp, LEMA director, tells us, "If I need somebody from the Navy base or the Guard base or the city of Meridian, I've got a contact person that I already got a dialogue with. I've got their phone numbers. When I call and say, 'Hey, It's David with LEMA. I need this or I need that,' they know who they're talking to."

One agency also at the table was the National Weather Service from Jackson. As fall approaches, the weather service will be more involved on the local level throughout the state.

Alan Gerard, the meteorologist-in-charge at the Jackson office, says, "One of the things we'll be doing is working with emergency managers like here in Lauderdale County, east central Mississippi, to have a severe weather preparedness day in late October to just kinda remind everybody that November and December and all the winter months can be dangerous from a severe weather perspective."

With the ever growing social media presence of Facebook and Twitter, the Jackson office has made it easier for the general public to share what they are seeing with them.

"We also have some software that we developed back in the office where we can monitor tweets, so even if people aren't necessarily tweeting directly to us, if they're tweeting about flooding or seeing hail, or wind, or that kind of thing, we're kinda mining that information to even have better awareness of what's going on in our local communities," says Gerard.

To follow NWS Jackson's tweets, or to send them storm information via Twitter, use the link below this article.

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