East Texas emergency management officials prepare vital radio equipment ahead of tropical weather

East Texas emergency management officials prepare radio equipment ahead of tropical storms

RUSK COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - Emergency management officials are readying radio equipment ahead of tropical weather later this week.

In Rusk County, they are specifically focused on radio communications. Even if the storm’s effects aren’t all that bad for our area, their equipment could be a lifeline for those who will get hit the hardest.

“Not only will it help us, but we also have the capabilities to reach down to the coast and communicate with operators down there, to ensure that if they need something we can relay it to the appropriate state or federal agency and communicate those needs,” said Michael Searcy with the OEM.

Searcy spent Monday afternoon setting up some of their radio equipment that can often be vital in natural disasters, and at times the only form of communication available. Searcy said that was the case when Henderson took a direct hit from a tornado in 2015.

“The only fallback we had to communicate with was amateur radio,” Searcy said.

Searcy said messages from those in the direct path of the storm can also be relayed to state and federal officials through their station if needed.

“Everything we need is at our fingertips,” Searcy said while testing the equipment.

Copyright 2020 KLTV. All rights reserved.