In an emergency situation one of the first lines of defense is the ability to keep the electricity going.There is no place more critical to this end than at the Emergency 911 office.
Recently a new generator was purchased and installed to help keep the power going for the emergency dispatchers in the event of a power outage.
E911 director Sonya Strevil requested the new generator due to the age and wear and tear on the old one.
Supervisors approved to purchase the new generator back in May for $34,970 from Trimble Electric.
Emergency Management Director Allen Bain said the old generator was a “1952 diesel powered generator that was leaking all the time. The radiator wouldn’t keep water in it so they had to fill it up every day or two.”
The old generator also required a cover over it to protect it from the elements.
“The new generator is not that way. It is self contained. It was built to withstand the elements outside much like a heating and cooling unit at your home.”
Bain said the new generator is diesel powered like the old one.
“It automatically comes on every Tuesday morning at 9:15 and runs for about 15 minutes for a self check. I go out and check the panel around 10 in the morning to make sure everything is okay. There are lights that will tell me if there is a problem. The only other thing it has to have is the oil and the coolant has to be checked and the tank filled with diesel.”
Bain said there is only a one second delay from the time the power goes off at the E911 and when the generator is fired up.
“If the power goes off it will have us right back up, just like you flipped a light switch on. This is so important because ewe don’t want our radios down any longer than they have to be.”
He also said the tank holds 180 gallons of fuel.
“We figured out that the E911 office should be able to run some 4 days on a full tank of fuel. By then hopefully the power will be back on, but if it’s not all we have to do is fill it up again.”
Bain said the county will be able to enjoy this valuable piece of equipment for years to come. “And it is all because Sonya had the foresight to ensure us a seamless emergency back up.”