The National Weather Service has named the City of Beckley as a “Storm Ready” community, a designation that only one other city in the state has achieved.

“This is an effort that we have been working toward for a number of months now and have recently gained approval,” Director of Emergency Services for the City of Beckley Kevin Taylor said.

Faith Borden and Andy Roche attended the quarterly Southern West Virginia Preparedness Partnership meeting to formerly name the city as a “Storm Ready” community.

“You all have worked really hard,” Borden said. “The Storm Ready program started in the late ‘80s and it is not an easy application process.”

She reviewed the necessary checkpoints for a city to become “Storm Ready,” including having a 24-hour warning point with people who know what to do with emergency information.

“This program has been going on for 20-plus years, but not everyone can get this designation.”

Taylor thanked everyone in the city who has worked with emergency preparedness and said the designation was a “great honor.”

Only six other counties have been named “Storm Ready” and Logan is the only other city.

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A “Partnership Award” was also presented to Hughes Supply Corp. for its leadership in preparedness.

Owner Tom Hughes accepted the award, which will now become an annual award for an organization that excels in emergency readiness.

“Hughes Supply Corp. received this award for what they do internally, being proactive and continuing to provide essential service,” Taylor said.

Taylor also noted that Hughes has been a volunteer firefighter and has served as the president of the board of directors for the Pax Fire Department since 1997.

“He’s a very deserving recipient.”

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Taylor said another round of Beckley Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training will be held Oct. 7, 8, 14 and 15.

A training opportunity will also be held next month to prepare the city for winter storms.

For more information, call Kevin Taylor at 304-256-0034.

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

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