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Perry continues to rebuild following tornado, seeks to replace emergency alert system

storm debris and wreckage of a building and emergency alert system
City of Perry
The city has been in contact with the company that services its emergency alert system to have it repaired.

The city of Perry is continuing to rebuild infrastructure after a tornado touched down in the community on August 11.

The tornado that passed through the city reached maximum wind speeds of 95 mph, according to the National Weather Service, and damaged several buildings. No injuries have been reported.

At a city council meeting Thursday, Mayor Sue Hammond commended city staff for helping respond to the severe weather, including cleanup of downed trees. She said the city has insurance that should cover the cost to replace most of the damaged buildings and infrastructure.

“The thing that we don’t have insurance for is all the trees, the beautiful trees that were uprooted and damaged and have had to be taken down because of the damage,” Hammond said.

Hammond said the city is thinking about creating a fund to help homeowners replace their trees.

The city is also asking its residents to sign up for an emergency alert system on their mobile devices after the storm damaged its severe weather siren.

Perry Police Chief Kyle Bawks said the city is working to replace the siren. But until then, he’s encouraging residents to opt into an alert system they can access on their phones.

“I know most people don’t go more than four to five feet away from their phone at any given point throughout the day, maybe even at night, so maybe a notification system that rings right into your phone would be the best way to do that,” Bawks said.

Officials say residents can join an alert system used across Shiawassee County called Smart 911 or sign up for notifications on local news and weather applications.

Arjun Thakkar is WKAR's politics and civics reporter.
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