Roosevelt County Ready for Disaster

Keith Wattenbarger, Emergency Management Director of Roosevelt County
Keith Wattenbarger, Emergency Management Director of Roosevelt County

Diana Crawford
NewsChannel 10

Portales, New Mexico - People in Roosevelt County can now rest assured their community is prepared for the worst, because of some new funding.

More than $42,000 are coming Roosevelt County's way, thanks to an emergency management grant. The grant is from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

It will allow emergency management for the county to buy more tornado sirens, train for emergency situations, and get base radio stations for the volunteer fire departments.

But they say the radio systems are especially needed for every day operations. Keith Wattenbarger, Emergency Management Director of Roosevelt County says, "They have a primary channel and if too many people are talking on it, like anything, you have limited access. Now it pretty much allows them to define an incident commander, and then everybody else that's on scene can primarily communicate with each other without overloading that particular channel."

Wattenbarger believes the radios will allow Fire Rescue to have better communication and quicker response time.

Roosevelt County expects to receive the money sometime after the first of the year. They will begin implementing training and radios soon after, but the tornado sirens probably won't go up until around May.