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#039;Storm Ready#039; in Covington County

Covington County is ready in case another hurricane should come roaring this way. And, the Covington County Emergency Management Agency has the hardware to prove it.

During Monday's Covington County Commission meeting, County EMA Director Susan Carpenter was presented with a plaque from the Nation Weather Service announcing the county's certification as "Storm Ready."

What does this mean for ordinary citizens? It means quite a lot.

We all know how rough hurricanes can be on Covington County. Remember Hurricane Opal?

We all know how important advanced warnings are in severe weather. Be it tornadoes, floods, lightning - and yes, hurricanes; advanced warning can often mean the difference between life and death.

In the past few years, Covington County has installed weather sirens throughout the county to warn citizens when severe weather is approaching. Those sirens have saved lives. Just this past summer, the need for those sirens was recognized when a series of small tornadoes traveled across the county causing minor damage. Fortunately, the sirens sounded and people in the direct path of those tornadoes had the time to seek shelter and prepare.

Covington County has also invested the time and resources to ensure the command center at EMA is top-notch. A few weeks ago on September 11, ordinary citizens had the opportunity to view this investment first-hand.

As we continue through the peak of hurricane season, and the anniversary of Hurricane Opal, we should take the time to be thankful for the excellent job our county EMA does and the foresight of our leaders to make sure the proper equipment is in place when another disaster strikes.

We applaud the EMA for their efforts in making Covington County "Storm Ready," and continuing their training efforts to provide even greater safety for Covington County's citizens.

Remember, it's not a matter of if another disaster strikes, but when.