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New notification system now live

On Monday, the city of Suffolk began using the “Suffolk Mass Notification System” to communicate with citizens and business during emergencies and other critical events.

The Suffolk Mass Notification System replaces the “Suffolk on the Alert” system, which has been in place since 2012, according to the Monday press release.

Residents currently signed up for the Suffolk on the Alert system will need to register again on the Suffolk Mass Notification platform by going online to suffolkva.us/SuffolkNotify.

The city partnered with Everbridge — “the worldwide leader in unified critical systems,” the press release states — on the Suffolk Mass Notification System to keep residents informed with quick and reliable emergency notifications and public service announcements.

Suffolk will use this system to alert residents about different events, ranging from routine announcements like holiday closings and water utility outages, to emergencies like severe winter weather, hurricanes, major road closures, evacuations and more.

Messages will be sent to residents on their preferred methods of contact, such as cell phones, text messaging, home phones, email and others. This will be to ensure “real-time access to potentially lifesaving information,” the press release states.

“We have a commitment to ensure public safety, community awareness, and emergency response. To uphold this, when critical information and public service announcements are available, we need to reach our residents as quickly and reliably as possible,” Diana Klink, director of media and community relations and city spokeswoman, stated in the press release. “The Everbridge-based emergency notification system allows the city of Suffolk to disseminate this information across all types of devices, ensuring residents have access to real-time public information when they need it the most.”