County safer with shelters

Published 4:53 pm Friday, October 14, 2011

It hasn’t been easy, but it appears Chilton County is on track to install 13 additional storm shelters.

Five shelters were located in the county—and well used by residents—before the Chilton County Commission voted to have a shelter located at every fire department in the county.

But some of the departments were determined to not have adequate space to support a shelter. Chilton County Emergency Management Agency Director Bill Collum led the effort to find other property suitable for the shelters.

Collum’s effort concluded when the commission approved three final locations at its meeting on Oct. 10: the Stanton Civic Center, property in the Providence community and at Higgins Ferry Park.

Collum said the planned shelters will give county residents every possible opportunity to keep themselves safe during severe weather.

“We can’t stop the weather; we can just give people a chance to protect themselves,” he said.

Residents would do well to pay close attention to what Collum said: Shelters are useful, but it’s up to residents to make use of them.

If April’s deadly tornadoes taught us anything, it’s that no city or county is immune from the threat of severe weather. Every one of us should make sure severe weather doesn’t catch us off guard—having a weather radio in your home is the best approach—and we should have a plan of action for when severe weather is headed our way.

It’s nice to know at least everyone in Chilton County can at least make a nearby storm shelter part of that plan.