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The city of Corvallis has launched an alert system designed to help spread the word on emergencies to community members.

Corvallis Alert allows anyone in the community to register emergency alerts via text, email or a telephone call.

Individuals can sign up for text alerts by texting to CORVALLIS to 888777. For more subscription options, go to www.corvallisoregon.gov/corvallisalert and use the sign-up box on the page.

During an emergency, public safety officials at the Corvallis Fire Department and Corvallis Police Department will use Corvallis Alert to communicate important, timely information to the general public, said Patrick Rollens, the city's public information officer.

The system will be used for a variety of large-scale incidents affecting the Corvallis community, including:

• Natural disasters, including an earthquake, flood, or wildfire

• Structure fires

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• Law enforcement activities

• Evacuation notices

• Road closures or traffic hazards

The system is designed to complement Linn-Benton Alert, the mass notification alert service operated by the Benton County Sheriff’s Office. Corvallis community members are encouraged to sign up for both services to ensure access to emergency information.

“We’ve been looking for an effective way of reaching our local community to distribute emergency information and notifications,” said Rollens. “Until recently, we’ve had access to Linn-Benton Alert, which is owned and operated by the Benton County Sheriff’s Office, but we wanted to provide an option for community members who wanted information that is local and specific to Corvallis.”

The system, which involved a subscription to Nizle, costs $9,900 per year, with the funds split between the budgets of the Corvallis Fire Department and the Corvallis Police Department.

Rollens also noted that “Albany has been using it for the last couple of years, and I’ve been impressed at the variety and frequency of messages that come across the system from them. “

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Contact reporter James Day at jim.day@gazettetimes.com or 541-812-6116. Follow at Twitter.com/jameshday or gazettetimes.com/blogs/jim-day.

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