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DeKalb County warns residents via FEMA alert of potential New Year’s COVID spread


DeKalb County warns residents via FEMA alert of potential New Year’s COVID spread

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Gigi Stanor checks his cell phone while passing a sign placed by the Clarkston COVID-19 Task Force, in partnership with the City of Clarkston and DeKalb County on July 25, 2020. The task force distributed thousands of masks, hand sanitizer, and educational material to apartment communities in Clarkston to help mitigate the spread of coronavirus. Photo by Dean Hesse.


Decatur, GA — DeKalb County will activate the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) warning system on Thursday, December 31 to encourage residents and visitors to be safe during the New Year’s holiday, according to a press release from the county.

“We must not allow our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 be undermined during the New Year’s celebration,” DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond said. “I am encouraging everyone to remain vigilant because the fight against the deadly pandemic is not over.”

Since the pandemic began, DeKalb County has worked with its public and private partners to slow the spread of COVID-19 by distributing masks and sanitizer to residents and small businesses. The county also has encouraged businesses to implement a “no mask, no service” policy.

According to Georgia Department of Public Health statistics, DeKalb County has the fourth highest number of confirmed cases in the state, with nearly 35,000 reported. There have been 491 confirmed deaths in the county from the pandemic.

The county will send out email and voice messages to the county’s 566,000 CodeRED emergency notification system subscribers. The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) will also transmit a geocoded text message to all residents, visitors and commuters within the county at the time of the alert.

By utilizing IPAWS geocoding technology, all visitors in the county will receive targeted COVID-19 alerts and messages on New Year’s eve.

DeKalb County will urge residents and visitors to protect themselves and others by:

– Staying home when possible;

– Wearing a mask;

– Practicing social distancing; and,

– Washing or sanitizing their hands often.

Residents are urged to get tested if they are experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms or believe they may have come in contact with someone infected with COVID-19. For testing locations and other COVID-19 related information, go to www.dekalbcountyga.gov/coronavirus. To sign up for CodeRED, visit www.dekalbcountyga.gov/dema/codered.

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