Shelby County commissioners encourage preparedness

By Julie Ehemann - Guest columnist

We read about emergencies every day. Some of them are very visible like tornadoes and earthquakes, while others happen without most of us noticing like a house fire. Large or small, disasters do happen. And they can happen in Shelby County. Being prepared can help us safely and effectively manage the situation. Do you know what to do in the event of an emergency?

Shelby County has a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), made up of representatives from police, fire service, emergency management, community leaders and manufacturers. The main emphasis of the LEPC is related to chemical emergency preparedness and response. The LEPC has developed a comprehensive plan that helps our community better prepare and respond to this type of emergency. The plan also covers other potential hazards that could occur. The Shelby County commissioners are engaged with the LEPC in helping in preparedness efforts and would be called on to assist in long-term disaster recovery efforts.

Your commissioners meet regularly with emergency management officials and help in the formulation of our local emergency plans and procedures. This planning is important to strengthen and protect our critical infrastructure and is part of why the commissioners support adoption and enforcement of local building codes. During a time of crisis, the commissioners would be on hand to assist in providing and locating available resources. Disaster assistance programs are available to help in a recovery effort, but are limited and often include loans. Therefore, it is important people consider appropriate locations to build homes and businesses, have emergency plans in place, and take actions to prepare for disasters before they strike.

The LEPC serves as the link between citizens, industry and government in emergency planning and preparedness for the community. Active participation by all is needed to ensure that the plan covers the types of emergencies we could experience in Shelby County. Your involvement could help the planning process. For more information on the Shelby County LEPC visit or like us on Facebook

Contact: Julie Ehemann

Commissioner or 937-492-7325

Cheri Drinkwine, Director Shelby County EMA or 937-492-5635

By Julie Ehemann

Guest columnist

The writer is a pharmacist and a Shelby County commissioner.

The writer is a pharmacist and a Shelby County commissioner.