The Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako has released a mass communication system called Voyent Alert to ensure there is an emergency and public alerts system in place to keep residents informed.
This new service is being implemented by the municipalities of Vanderhoof, Burns Lake, Fraser Lake, Fort St. James, Granisle, Houston, Smithers, Telkwa and Burns Lake.
The project has been in works for almost a year and will cost a total of $11, 500 per year.
With a lot of residents in remote northern B.C. having limited connectivity, to no internet connectivity at all, it was getting difficult to communicate with people in regard to emergency situations, or public works alerts.
With this system in place, residents can not only download the mobile application, but also choose to receive alerts via text, email or landlines.
However, only people registered with the Voyent Alert system will get notifications, so residents of the regional district have to actively register for the service.
“Residents are not automatically signed up for the system. They have to register by calling your municipality or the regional district or visiting your community’s website,” said Deborah Jones-Middleton, director of protective services with the RDBN.
“We encourage residents to sign up for the Bulkley Nechako Emergency & Public Alerts so they can be informed about what is happening in their community,” she added.
The service is accessible to all the residents of the RDBN, however, Middleton said rural residents who do not have access to a mobile or internet, should call 1-800-320-3339 to register for this system so they can receive information via their landlines.
The service is free of charge and it would let the users add multiple locations such as home, work, kid’s school, etc., to get notified regarding a specific region.
Middleton mentioned that although the Regional District had taken the lead on coordinating the project, all municipalities will be engaged in promoting the service, and will be in charge of issuing their own alerts.
Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.