On Aug. 1, Forsyth County was struck by a severe thunderstorm that ignited fires, downed trees and power lines.
It was also a reminder that we are vulnerable to unpredictable weather, so anything we can do to be prepared will give us the best chance of weathering the storm.
County firefighters battled four house fires that day, plus three mobile homes in south Forsyth were damaged after a tree fell on them and several others were deemed structurally unsound.
In order to have an edge, the Forsyth County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) encourages residents to sign up to receive time-sensitive weather alerts for severe thunderstorm warnings, flash flood warnings and tornado warnings.
I signed up last year and it has worked out just as advertised. Plus you can elect to be notified when alerts are issued via telephone calls, emails or text messages.
I chose all three.
Best of all, it's free to receive these weather alerts (phone usage or text charges still apply).
The alerts were designed for use in concert with the county's outdoor severe weather sirens and a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather radio.
To sign up for the alerts, visit www.forsythco.com or you can call Forsyth County EMA office at 770-205-5674.