The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

March 22, 2013

Beckley residents urged to sign up for free public safety alerts

By Wendy Holdren
Register-Herald Reporter

BECKLEY — Director of Emergency Services for the City of Beckley Kevin Taylor is encouraging people to sign up for a free notification service called Nixle.

Nixle offers free public safety and community information that can be delivered via text or e-mail.

Taylor said while he was in California a few years back, he heard a report about a missing child. Later, he found out that a local law enforcement agency had found the child using the Nixle notification service.

When he returned home, he researched the service and decided to get Beckley involved.

He is the administrator for the City of Beckley, but he said the fire department, sanitary board and police all have access to the account to post updates.

“Once someone signs up, they have the option of what types of information they want to receive and how to receive it,” Taylor explained.

There are three categories of information: community events, advisory and emergency.

Community events would include notices about Chili Night or fairs and festivals.

Advisory would provide information about scheduled road closures or construction areas.

Emergency would provide updates during emergency situations, such as last summer’s derecho.

Taylor also said the service can be tailored to meet the subscriber’s interests.

“Maybe the subscriber doesn’t want to know anything about non-emergency events. They can certainly make that decision up front or change their mind as they go along.”

Information can be received in three ways: accessing your account online, text messages or e-mails.

“This is a free service used nationally and I encourage everyone to sign up.”

Multiple areas can be selected if a user would like to receive updates about more than one zip code.

For more information or to get signed up, visit www. nixle.com.

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com