Three years ago today, residents of Ringgold, in northwest Georgia’s Catoosa County, woke up to find their city devastated by an EF-4 tornado. Now Ringgold is in the path of potential severe weather again.
Eight people died in Ringgold the night of April 27, 2011, as tornadoes raged through the area.
Since then, Catoosa County has installed new weather sirens and has set up a texting and email mass notification system.
According to Clarence Muse, Deputy Director of Catoosa County Emergency Management, this time is different. “I feel more confident that we’re ready, that people will know there’s something coming,” said Muse. “And everybody’s comparing this to the tornado outbreak in 2011. So I think that there’s a heightened awareness level right now that there possibly was not then.”
Muse says his department has also hosted disaster preparedness workshops and has pushed people to participate in the state’s program, Ready Georgia, which gives advice and instructions on preparing households for emergencies.