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Milton's 'Code Red' has successful first run

February 05, 2013
MILTON, Ga. — City of Milton leaders used the Code Red emergency notification system for the first time on Jan. 30.

Severe weather notifications were sent to the 7,000 landline and cellphones active with program.

Milton Fire Marshall Matthew Marietta says the city plans to use the notification system sparingly.

"I want the citizens to know that when they hear it, it's a true emergency, not an announcement about an event at City Hall," Marietta said.

Marietta said this includes times when there is a tornado warning that has a predicted path through some portion of the city, or when a child is missing.

Milton residents can register just a cellphone, if they would like.

"But we need a hard address in Milton because some of the alert functions are map-based, which means specific communities can be selected if the emergency is specific to their area," Marietta said.

Registering both a landline and cellphone will ensure citizens who are not home are notified.

"I'd like to see more citizens register for the program," Marietta said.

With about 33,000 residents, most of the city is not yet registered.

Marietta said the warning was given in conjunction with the National Weather Service and concurrent with Roswell and Alpharetta setting off their sirens.

"After this first successful use of Code Red, we are now looking to fine-tune our system," he said.

Marietta said the system is beneficial to the community during severe weather conditions and plans to have a pre-recorded message for regular events like tornado warnings, making the process run even smoother next time.

"I continue to encourage residents to register their numbers, especially for times like tornado warnings," he said.

Milton doesn't have sirens set up at this time, Marietta said.

Milton Councilmember Matt Kunz said he'd also like to see more people use the system.

"I received the notification and was glad to see how well it worked," Kunz said.

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