Project Community Alert is a community-wide effort led by the Metropolitan Emergency Managers Committee.
MEMC’s goal is to place 100,000 alarm-equipped, programmable emergency weather radios in the nine-county Kansas City metropolitan area. By sounding alarms inside homes, schools and businesses, weather radios can alert people who might not hear outdoor sirens, saving lives and preventing injuries.
Area Price Chopper grocery stores are selling the radios at a special price ($29.95) and helping with the community outreach portion of the PCA program. The NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) weather radios offered through Project Community Alert use technology that allows owners to program their radios to sound warnings for their specific community. (Visit the National Weather Service site for programming codes.) While they are primarily used for severe weather alerts, authorities can also use these radios to issue warnings about other types of hazards, such as chemical spills or biological hazards.
Weather radios provide constant, useful and up-to-date weather information. They are equipped with a special alarm tone that will sound an alert and give immediate information in a life-threatening situation.
During a natural or man-made emergency, the National Weather Service will interrupt routine weather radio programming and broadcast a special tone that activates weather radios, by county, in the listening areas.
The hearing and visually impaired can also get these warnings by connecting weather radios to other attention-getting devices such as strobe lights, pagers, bed-shakers, personal computers and text printers.
NOAA reports that while between 85 and 95 percent of Americans can receive NOAA weather broadcasts, only 5 to 10 percent actually own a NOAA weather radio.