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West Hartford Community Advisory Notification System May Be Used for COVID-19 Updates

West Hartford Town Hall. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Residents are encouraged to sign up for both the West Hartford Community Advisory Notification System as well as the CT Alert System in case they are used to disseminate critical information about the coronavirus.

By Ronni Newton

Officials in West Hartford, as well as throughout the state, are mobilizing resources in case the COVID-19 virus, also known as the coronavirus, intensifies locally, and the town’s Office of Emergency Management is reminding residents to sign up for both town and state emergency alert systems.

The town is planning for various scenarios, said Robert McCue, who retired last summer from his position as assistant chief with the West Hartford Police Department and is currently working part time for the town’s Office of Emergency Management.

“One of the things we are working on is to make sure that we have multiple ways to get information out to residents should the need arise,” McCue said. “One of the ways that we will be pushing out information is by use of the West Hartford Community Advisory Notification System. There is also the potential that the state may use the CT Alert system to disseminate critical information.”

As of Thursday afternoon, the Connecticut Department of Public Health is aware of 200 people in the state being monitored for COVID-19. Eighteen people have been tested, with 13 of those tests coming back negative for the virus and the remaining five still pending.

While state lawmakers are continuing to craft their strategy to combat the coronavirus and communicate accurately and effectively with the public, McCue is urging residents to be sure they are registered with both alert systems.

Jared Morin, the Town of West Hartford’s chief information officer, said there are currently 20,450 contacts listed in the local system which is used by the town government to quickly and efficiently provide residents with critical information about local emergencies or other situations.

Notifications can be received via a variety of methods specified by the resident, including by phone (home, business, and/or cell), email, text message, or hearing impaired receiving devices.

“The West Hartford Community Advisory Notification System will be one of the ways that we will be using to provide emergency information with the current COVID-19 virus should the need arise, and we would like to have as many residents as possible on the system,” McCue said.

He stressed that it’s important to sign up for the CT Alert System as well, which is used when there is a statewide need to notify residents about widespread emergencies.

The CT Alert System will automatically call numbers listed in the white or yellow pages, but will not send alerts to cellphones or email addresses unless residents specifically register that information by entering it into the system, McCue said.

Click the following link to register with the West Harford Community Advisory Notification System: https://www.westhartfordct.gov/gov/departments/police/community_advisory_notification_.asp

The following link is for the CT Alert System: https://www.ctalert.gov/ctalert/cwp/view.asp?A=3875&Q=458434

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