Quantcast

New community saferooms in Etowah County - abc27 WHTM

New community saferooms in Etowah County

Posted: Updated:
ETOWAH COUNTY, Ala. - A six year wait for community saferooms ends this week for three rural areas in etowah county.

Storm shelters arrived at Gallant Volunteer Fire Department, Coates Bend Volunteer Fire Department, and Macedonia Baptist Church.

"We're absolutely glad to have them here now," Gadsden-Etowah County EMA director Mike Bryant said.

"This process began back in 2008."

He said the process of getting FEMA grants and funding from other sources typically takes a while.  However, the deadly storms of April 27, 2011, put a halt on the progress for Etowah's shelters, as attention and money went to immediate recovery.

"It was on such a massive scale that everything prior to that got pushed into the background, which was understandable," Bryant said.

"We began to try again to get this brought forward.  It was just...  I think it just kind of got lost through the works."

The county finally received approval of the grant in late 2012.  It covers three-fourths of the cost, but the communities must provide the rest.  That can include the property and labor.

The Gallant site was ready months ago, but Bryant said it saved the county money to have them all installed at once.

"The weather was so bad in the winter, we hoped to have them in by the spring tornado season, but the weather was so bad we couldn't do the site preps," he said.

Crews placed the shells on concrete foundations Tuesday.  Workers will secure them to the ground with bolts and epoxy this weekend.

Coates Bend fire chief Michael Prickett said his community began waiting on their saferoom more than five years ago.  The fire station hosted people during storms, and Prickett said it it supposed to withstand 90 mile per hour winds.

"We have had people here.  We've got the community center we go to.  Churches have opened in our area, so we've got a lot of places to go to for our community," Prickett said.

While those are all better than a mobile home, they are not as sturdy as FEMA-certified shelters.  The county has a "Shelter Etowah" program in place with a network of churches and other buildings open as shelters during storms.  There was only one FEMA-certified shelter, at the Northeast Etowah Water Authority.

Now there are four, and the new sites will be added to the Shelter Etowah website, which lists the shelters that are open at any given time.  The new community saferooms each have seating for 50 people.

"If storms get really bad, we're going to pack them in until the door won't shut hardly.  We're going to try to keep everybody safe in our community," Prickett said.

There is also a Shelter Etowah app available on iTunes and in the Google Play store for Android smartphones.

  • Central Alabama NewsMore>>

  • Fire danger rises for Labor Day weekend

    Fire danger rises for Labor Day weekend

    Friday, August 29 2014 11:59 PM EDT2014-08-30 03:59:40 GMT
    Our recent dry weather has created the perfect conditions for fire danger. More >>
    Our recent dry weather has created the perfect conditions for fire danger. More >>
  • Talladega parents allege school employee wrote racist Facebook posts

    Talladega parents allege school employee wrote racist Facebook posts

    Friday, August 29 2014 7:32 PM EDT2014-08-29 23:32:28 GMT
    Several parents and community members in Talladega are upset Friday over allegations of racial comments made from a school employee's Facebook page.More >>
    Several parents and community members in Talladega are upset Friday over allegations of racial comments made from a school employee's Facebook page.More >>
  • Hackleburg High School preps for first home game in three years

    Friday, August 29 2014 4:57 PM EDT2014-08-29 20:57:25 GMT
    Tonight is a homecoming three years in the making for Hackleburg High School. The team takes the field tonight in their new stadium, finally completed after an E-F five tornado destroyed it on April 27, 2011.It is sure to be a packed house at Ray Stadium as the Hackleburg panthers take on Marion County, tonight at 7:00 p.m. This is going to be an emotional night, not only for the school, but for the community as well. "This is going to be an emotional game, an emotional crowd. This field ho...More >>
    Tonight is a homecoming three years in the making for Hackleburg High School. The team takes the field tonight in their new stadium, finally completed after an E-F five tornado destroyed it on April 27, 2011.It is sure to be a packed house at Ray Stadium as the Hackleburg panthers take on Marion County, tonight at 7:00 p.m. This is going to be an emotional night, not only for the school, but for the community as well. "This is going to be an emotional game, an emotional crowd. This field ho...More >>
  • Anniston - Gadsden Area NewsMore>>

  • Arrest made in large level extortion scheme

    Arrest made in large level extortion scheme

    Friday, August 29 2014 12:45 PM EDT2014-08-29 16:45:16 GMT
    "Everett Leon Stout, 72 and Miriam Clair Schultz, 67 are charged with 14 counts of extortion.More >>
    "Everett Leon Stout, 72 and Miriam Clair Schultz, 67 are charged with 14 counts of extortion.More >>
  • Gadsden police recover more than 300 stolen items; felony charges against suspected fence

    Gadsden police recover more than 300 stolen items; felony charges against suspected fence

    Thursday, August 28 2014 11:22 PM EDT2014-08-29 03:22:34 GMT
    Joe Walker Pearl (Photo: Etowah County Sheriff's Office)Joe Walker Pearl (Photo: Etowah County Sheriff's Office)
    Police in Gadsden are trying to return hundreds of stolen items to their rightful owners. Captain Paul Cody said officers bust a large fencing operation this week. Joe Pearl, 75, is the suspect in the case. It took a long time to sort through and document a very wide range of stolen property. "We've collected a lot of stuff," Cody said. "Toilet paper. We have non-firearms related weapons, we have karaoke machines, musical instruments, car stereos, underwear."More >>
    Police in Gadsden are trying to return hundreds of stolen items to their rightful owners. Captain Paul Cody said officers bust a large fencing operation this week. Joe Pearl, 75, is the suspect in the case. It took a long time to sort through and document a very wide range of stolen property. "We've collected a lot of stuff," Cody said. "Toilet paper. We have non-firearms related weapons, we have karaoke machines, musical instruments, car stereos, underwear."More >>
  • Gadsden police arrest suspect in deadly stabbing case

    Gadsden police arrest suspect in deadly stabbing case

    Thursday, August 28 2014 11:37 AM EDT2014-08-28 15:37:31 GMT
    William D'Angelo McKinney (Photo: Etowah County Sheriff's Office)William D'Angelo McKinney (Photo: Etowah County Sheriff's Office)
    Investigators in Gadsden said a man strangled his ex-girlfriend Tuesday evening before stabbing another man to death. Officers arrested 30-year-old William D'Angelo McKinney Wednesday night. He faces charges for murder and domestic violence with strangulation. Police said McKinney went to his ex-girlfriend's home in the Mill Village area and let himself in. Investigators said she asked him to leave, but he shoved her and then put her in a headlock until she blacked out.More >>
    Investigators in Gadsden said a man strangled his ex-girlfriend Tuesday evening before stabbing another man to death. Officers arrested 30-year-old William D'Angelo McKinney Wednesday night. He faces charges for murder and domestic violence with strangulation. Police said McKinney went to his ex-girlfriend's home in the Mill Village area and let himself in. Investigators said she asked him to leave, but he shoved her and then put her in a headlock until she blacked out.More >>
Most Popular
Stories
Videos
loading...
Powered by WorldNow