9-3-13 10:30 AM EDT | Email Article

Collaboration Timed to State's Participation in National Preparedness Month

ALPHARETTA, Ga., Sept. 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- In observance of National Preparedness Month, Verizon Wireless is working with Georgia Emergency Management Agency's (GEMA) Ready Georgia campaign throughout September to educate consumers about how best to prepare themselves for emergencies. GEMA and Verizon Wireless leadership announced the collaboration during an event at an Atlanta-area Verizon Wireless store this morning.

"Disasters can strike quickly, and often with no warning, so we all need to take steps now to protect ourselves and families," said Charley English, director of GEMA/Homeland Security. "By acting on Ready Georgia's message of 'prepare, plan and stay informed,' individuals, families and businesses have the power to become their own first responders during emergency situations. That's the idea behind National Preparedness Month and the activities that Ready Georgia, emergency management agencies across the state, and community partners such as Verizon are organizing this month."

Verizon Wireless encourages residents to have their emergency communications plans in place, offering the following tips:

  • Keep wireless phone batteries fully charged – in case local power is lost – well before warnings are issued.
  • Have additional charged batteries and car-charger adapters available for back-up power.
  • Keep phones, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry, accessible location.
  • Maintain a family emergency plan that lists emergency contacts. The Ready Georgia mobile app, which will be newly updated in September, features customizable plans, as well as checklists for supplies and localized emergency alerts.  
  • Limit non-emergency calls to conserve battery power and free-up wireless networks for emergency agencies and operations. Send brief TXT messages rather than voice calls for the same reason.
  • Check weather and news reports available on wireless phone applications when commercial power is out.

During the month of September, Georgians can take advantage of a special digital coupon from Verizon Wireless for 25 percent off an accessory that can be utilized during severe weather emergencies, such as a phone charger or battery, by simply texting "ReadyGeorgia" to 22699. To help further spread the word about severe weather preparedness, the company has also enlisted the help of Atlanta Falcons Running Back Jason Snelling, who is starring in a video message urging Georgians to prepare their severe weather "game plans." The message, which will debut this month, will be shared via social media channels.

Additionally, on September 7 and 8, customer service representatives at select Verizon Wireless Communications Stores will assist customers to setup their smartphones for severe weather emergencies, offering a tutorial on free apps, such as the Ready Georgia mobile app, to help them get prepared. Georgia Verizon Wireless locations participating in the emergency preparedness consumer education initiative include:

  • Verizon Wireless at Buckhead (Atlanta) - 3275 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 270
  • Verizon Wireless at Abercorn (Savannah) - 7805 Abercorn St., Suite 27
  • Verizon Wireless at West Macon (Macon) - 4590 Billy Williamson Drive
  • Verizon Wireless at North Columbus (Columbus) - 6783 Veterans Parkway, Building 3
  • Verizon Wireless at Augusta Exchange (Augusta) - 254 Robert C. Daniel Parkway, Suite 104

"This collaboration is part of our ongoing commitment to disaster preparedness and response in Georgia," said Jonathan LeCompte – president, Verizon Wireless Georgia/Alabama Region. "Just as we prepare year-round to be ready when storms and other emergencies strike, we encourage all Georgians to take necessary steps to be prepared in advance."

For more information on preparing for severe weather, including a detailed emergency Ready kit checklist, local emergency contacts and specific information on how to prepare households with pets or elderly or disabled family members, visit the Ready Georgia website (www.ready.ga.gov) or www.gema.ga.gov; or contact your local EMA.

About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's largest 4G LTE network and largest, most reliable 3G network. The company serves 100.1 million retail customers, including 94.3 million retail postpaid customers.  Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 73,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD).  For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com.  For the latest news and updates about Verizon Wireless, visit our News Center at http://news.verizonwireless.com or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/VZWNews

About Ready Georgia
Ready Georgiais a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies.  The campaign is a project of GEMA/Homeland Security and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.


SOURCE Verizon Wireless

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Morningstar - 2013/9/3 - Verizon Wireless Teams Up With Ready Georgia To Help Georgians Prepare For Severe Weather
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