Contact: Barry Smith, Emergency Manager, 970-328-3545 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Register for 911 Call Back
Register for EC Alert
Residents in the Eagle Valley now have the opportunity to subscribe additional phone numbers to Eagle County’s 911 call back system. The automated voice notification system is used to disseminate emergency information over the phone, such as evacuation notices, based on location.
The 911 call back system relies on databases purchased from telephone companies that provide landline service associated with a physical location. These databases do not include cellular numbers or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) numbers, such as Vonage or XFINITY Voice. The new subscription service allows these numbers to be added to the database and assigned to an address.
The service is available for residences and businesses in the Eagle Valley from the top of Vail Pass and Tennessee Pass west to Bair Ranch, including the Sweetwater area, and north to the Routt County line. Eagle County residents who live in the Roaring Fork Valley receive dispatch services from the Aspen/Pitkin County Communications Center. Anyone may subscribe to the service; however, Eagle County Emergency Manager Barry Smith says it may be of particular importance to residents without landline phones, those with VoIP phone service, and second homeowners.
The 911 voice system and EC Alert, a text message and email subscription service, were recently tested by Eagle County and the Vail Public Safety Communications Center. Smith says while the new subscription service is a valuable tool, the test indicated that EC Alert was much more efficient and effective.
“The voice system’s ability to send a large volume of messages is limited to telephone circuit capacity,” said Smith. “When phone circuits are being used for normal phone calls, which tend to increase during times of emergency, fewer circuits are available to deliver emergency notifications,” he said. In addition, the system can be hindered by devices that screen computer generated phone calls, or cordless phones that do not function during electrical outages.
All residents are strongly encouraged to subscribe to EC Alert at www.ecalert.org. The service is customizable and provides citizens with useful information and emergency updates by sending messages to a variety of devices, including email accounts and cell phones. Registration to EC Alert is free, although text messaging fees may apply based on individual cell phone plans.
Smith says that during an emergency, information will be shared through as many means as possible. “There is no one tool that will work for everyone,” said Smith. “Our goal is to ensure all residents and guests are able to receive critical information as quickly as possible.”
For more information on emergency preparedness, contact Eagle County Emergency Management at 970-328-3545.