A new emergency notification system, Swift911, went live in Lenoir County on Tuesday.
Lenoir County Emergency Services is behind the new alert system.
Residents of Kinston, La Grange and Pink Hill, the three municipalities in Lenoir County, can register for the new system to receive emergency notifications for things like severe weather, natural or man-made disasters, crime and fires.
Director of Lenoir County Emergency Services, Jerri King, said the department saw a need within the community and she believes Swift911 is the solution.
“There’s information that we need to get out in a very timely manner,” said King. “Sometimes it’s a little harder to get that information out to a mass group of people. So, this is a way we can get something out in a very timely manner…sometimes in a matter of seconds.”
Alerts can be sent via text message, voicemail, email or through social media platforms.
Some alerts will be sent only to the residents in the geographic location to which the alert pertains, and others will be county-wide alerts.
If residents have a landline phone with a publicly listed number, that number is already registered to receive voicemails.
After registering, users can download the Swift911 Public app. The free app is available for both Apple and Android users.
Users can select which notifications to opt-in to, such as weather alerts.
“Just about everyone has a cellphone now. So, we felt like this was a way we can get that information out and we just want to make sure our citizens are protected.”