Mission: To provide for mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery from natural and human-made disasters within Midland County.
Input Sought on the Midland County Hazard Mitigation Plan
Periodically, Midland County is required to update its hazard mitigation plan. This is your opportunity to provide input on the plan that will be used for the next five years. First you may ask, what is hazard mitigation? Hazard mitigation is any action taken before, during or after a disaster to permanently eliminate or reduce the long-term risk to human life and property from natural and technological hazards. Our hazard mitigation plan gives focus to long-term goals which will help us create a less vulnerable, more sustainable community. Our plan, once approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), keeps us eligible to apply for federal disaster mitigation grants. These grants can go a long way in helping the community achieve its mitigation goals.
On the right side of this page there is a link to the 2013 Midland County Hazard Mitigation Plan Draft Update. The link is there for you to access the plan, review it, and provide input. Please note that updates are marked as such and are in blue text. You'll also find that the Midland County Geographic Information Systems Coordinator has contributed greatly to the plan with many new maps. These maps help to visually define much of the plan's information. The review period will continue from now until September 25, 2013. Your comments or questions can be submitted to
Providing Emergency Information and Instructions
That is the purpose of 1-888-TELL-MORE.If a tornado, flood, chemical accident or some other extraordinary event occurs, emergency responders will provide information to you about the event and its potential effect on the community through this emergency information hotline. Call this number for official information and instructions when you become aware of an emergency or disaster in Midland County. You may also tune to WMPX AM 1490 or WMRX FM 97.7 to receive emergency information.
Nixle - A New Way to Reach You With Important Information
Providing information to the public during emergencies and disasters has always been an important part of emergency management. In the early stages of an event, alerts and emergency instructions are distributed as quickly as possible. As activities change from emergency response to recovery operations other messages are shared with the public about such things as sheltering, damage assessment and disaster assistance.
In Midland County we attempt to use as many methods of communication as possible. Messages are distributed to television and radio stations. Regular programming on Midland Government Television (MGTV-96) is interrupted in order to display information. Messages are also recorded on the Midland County Emergency Information Hotline 1-888-835-5667. These methods along with warning systems such as outdoor warning sirens and NOAA Weather Radio combine to alert residents of emergencies and provide information.
The most effective way of providing information to citizens is to reach them right where they are. For many of us that means contact through a computer or mobile device via an email or text message. The capability to make contacts like these has been available however the cost of implementing the process was prohibitive. Now that has changed.
In 2009 we were introduced to an Internet-based service called Nixle. It’s a service not unlike that provided by Twitter, only Nixle is for public safety not social networking. Local agencies including the Midland Police Department, Midland Fire Department, and Midland County Office of Emergency Management have registered as user agencies on Nixle, which means we can distribute text messages and email via the Nixle service to individuals who have registered to receive them.
Messages can range from general information to alerts with emergency instructions. In order to receive messages through Nixle you first must register on the system. Here’s how you do it:
- Go to www.nixle.com
- Click “Register Now”
- Create an account by choosing a User Name and Password
- Enter an email address and cell phone number where you would like to receive messages
- Enter your address or a nearby intersection
- Click “Sign Me Up”
To customize your account you can click on “Locations” and then “Add New” to add addresses. For example, if you want to receive messages where you work in addition to where you live you would add the address of your workplace. By clicking on “Settings” you can subscribe to receive messages from each agency and set message priorities. This is important because you must “opt-in” to receive local messages. If you need assistance in signing up you may contact Nixle via email at . Please note that the standard fees normally charged by your wireless network provider for text messaging will apply to messages received from Nixle.
Keep in mind that we will continue to use all the methods of community warning and notification that you are already familiar with. Nixle is just an addition. And at least for now Nixle messages will not be the first sent. As we get experience using Nixle and as our own capabilities change and grow the use of Nixle will likely expand as well. But before anything happens at all you must sign up. So please follow the instructions provided and register to receive messages through Nixle.
Shelter-In-Place Streaming Video
Would you like to learn more about warning systems in the Midland area? Would you like more information about sheltering-in-place for chemical emergencies? The Office of Emergency Management has an 8-minute program titled "Shelter-In-Place: Don't Be Left Out!" that can quickly provide the information you need to protect yourself and your family in case of a chemical emergency. A link to this locally produced program is located at the end of this paragraph. If you would like a copy of the program in DVD format call the Office of Emergency Management or send in an Email request. The program is free of charge.
Shelter In Place Video
WMV file, requires Windows Media Player
NOAA Weather Radio Serves Midland County
NOAA Weather Radio is provided as a public service by the U.S. Department of Commerce through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It broadcasts National Weather Service forecast information 24 hours a day. A new NOAA Weather Radio transmitter began service from the Central Michigan University broadcast tower in Mount Pleasant in June 2001. This transmitter serves the entire mid-Michigan area, including Midland County. It broadcasts on a frequency of 162.525 MHz, which is "Channel F" on specially equipped weather radios. Weather radios typically have a special alarm tone feature that sounds an alert and gives immediate information about life-threatening situations, such as severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. These radios can be purchased through electronics stores and at a variety of sources on the Internet. Most radios provide for the programming of a "county code" which allows the radio to receive watches and warnings just for the county or counties for which you are interested. Midland County's code is 026111.
Emergency Preparedness Guide Available
The Office of Emergency Management and the Midland Daily News have partnered to publish and distribute an Emergency Preparedness Guide for residents of Midland County. The guide contains a wealth of information about how to protect yourself and your family during emergencies and disasters. Some of the topics covered by the handbook include:
- Developing Your Family Disaster Plan
- Thunderstorms and Lightning
- Winter Storms
- Dealing With Flood Waters
- Insuring Against Disasters
- Hazardous Materials
- Homeland Security
- Emergency Planning for Business
- Protecting Your Life and Property from Wildfire
- Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
Midland/Gladwin Critical Incident Stress Management Team
Emergency responders in Midland and Gladwin Counties should be aware of services available to them through the Midland/Gladwin Critical Incident Stress Management Team. The team is an organization of local volunteers comprised of firefighters, emergency response personnel, medical personnel, mental health workers, law enforcement staff, clergy, and other community members who have been trained to assist in the debriefing of unusually stressful (critical incidents) events. These individuals are supported by their agencies to assist in this effort. All team members have been trained in the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation model of debriefing, which is the national standard for critical incident stress management teams. All receive specialized training in responding to traumatic situations in the community and emergency services.
When a highly stressful incident occurs the pressures may be such that people have difficulty coping. They may experience nightmares, unexplained anger, and other symptoms of stress. The Critical Incident Stress Management Team can assist in the healing process by conducting a debriefing, which is usually best scheduled within 24 to 72 hours after an incident. Team members schedule a debriefing time and facilitate a time to discuss the incident in a structured, confidential environment. Participants are encouraged to support each other. Following the debriefing, team members are available for individual conversation and providing of additional information.
Want to learn more about Critical Incident Stress Management? Contact the Midland-Gladwin Critical Incident Stress Management Team by calling (989) 633-1300 or (989) 426-4567 or visit their webpage at: http://mgcism.wordpress.com/