By Sid Riley
Official ribbon cutting ceremony held Thursday, September 25
The day was bright and beautiful, and the new EOC building looked especially impressive as it reflected the morning sunlight. An overflow crowd assembled in the large main control room for a brief appreciation and dedication ceremony which was capably moderated by EOC Director, Rodney Andreasen.
The $1.87 million dollar, 7,800 sq. ft. facility is a state of the art emergency operations center which was built totally from State provided grant funding. When official emergency situations are declared, this center will house approximately 25 trained emergency officials that will direct all county reaction efforts. This will be the communications and control hub that will assure that all emergency response activities are properly coordinated and controlled. During non-emergency periods the center will direct and conduct training programs for all response personnel.
The new structure was built to withstand a 160 MPH wind, which would be a category 5 hurricane. Our county, through the efforts of Rodney Andreasen was one of the first counties in the state to be funded and to get a new EOC in place. A similar facility is under construction in nearby Washington County, twenty three are to be built state wide.
Let us all hope that this facility is never really needed by our community. However, if we ever do have a major disaster hit Jackson County, we will all undoubtedly be happy this EOC does exist.