Monday, May 20, 2024

A system for instantly alerting residents of crises should be in place in a month, the city manager announced Monday.

“A month too late,” City Manager Robert W. Healy said wryly to city councillors, referring to a Saturday break of a 30-inch water main at Broadway and Trowbridge Street that flooded the area and lowered water pressure citywide. The biggest issues were resolved within five hours, he said, and temporary paving Tuesday morning should essentially mark the end of the problems.

Water never had to be boiled for use, and there was no citywide shutdown or fire risk, he said. There was also backup from regional water service if those things were to happen.

“It was a very difficult four- to five-hour period,” Healy said, but he and others had nothing but praise for how the crisis was handled by emergency responders and Public Works.

Information was slow getting out, though, said vice mayor Henrietta Davis, and some that did get out was misinformation.

The new information system will be called Code Red, said Healy, who spoke of the need for the city to take greater advantage of social media. The city already sends out news via an e-mail system for which residents must sign up.