New Technology Helping Pike County Officials Prepare For Severe Weather

By: Angela Sparkman Email
By: Angela Sparkman Email

Some county officials spent the day preparing for the severe storms. Officials say the new technology could help emergency responders save lives.

Pike County Emergency Management officials say they're one of the only counties to have special computers in their trucks that lets them track storms as they happen and lets them know where a potential dangerous weather situation is so they can get there before the first call for help ever arrives.

Just a few hours ago, it was sunny in Pike County, but Emergency Management Director Doug Tackett knew it wouldn't stay that way for long. Tackett knows what the weather is like at all times everywhere in Pike County. He has a doppler radar on a laptop in his truck.

"It's a good tool for us to know what's going on in the county. You need all the information you can get as quick as you can get it," Tackett said.

During a storm, Pike County emergency management crew members can tell immediately where the worst is and where they need to be.

"We can see the intensity of the storm, we can look at the winds of the storm, with this radar we can actually slice the storm in different layers to see where the most intense are," Tackett said.

For example, if they're in Pikeville and they see there's damage causing winds in Phelps, then they know to go there. They can also tell where the most rainfall is if flooding is a threat.

Crews are also testing their new mobile communications tower that just arrived this week. It will help when the power or phones are out.

"If we were to lose one of our tower sites critical to our responder's communications, we can take this out there and have the tower site back up and running," Tackett said.

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