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      Code Red offers warning for tropical troubles

      Tropical storm Beryl is drenching the east coast and reaching into southwest Georgia. As a part of Hurricane Preparedness Week officials say now is a good time to get signed up for Code Red.

      The National Weather Service decides the direction, the intensity and the speed of a storm. They put a polygon on the course and then everybody who's inside the polygon will receive a telephone call, says Jim Vaught, Albany-Dougherty County E.M.A. Director.

      Vaught says a phone call or email from Code Red will go out at the same time that city sirens are turned on and anyone registered for the program will receive an early warning.

      We want people to be aware of serious weather coming our way so that they can go ahead and take precautions; clean up around their home, maybe do some work on their limbs, make sure their cars aren't parked under a heavy old trees, says Jim Vaught.

      Although southwest Georgia is not known for hurricanes, officials say the area does see remnants from the storms. In this case, people can be without power for days. When something like this happens officials say it's best to have a first aid kit, flashlights and batteries just in case.

      If you're going to have a baby, you're going to need some extra baby items. If you have medicines, we want you to have a 7 day prescription worth of medicine on hand. Cash is always a good thing. If you TMre without electricity, an ATM may not be working, says Lara Gill, Executive Director for the Flint River Chapter of the American Red Cross.

      Gill says it's also a good idea to have non-perishable food items on hand and an evacuation plan in place.

      Anyone interested in signing up for Code Red can follow the link to the website.

      The American Red Cross is advising anyone interested in volunteering in the aftermath of a storm to get training now because once a disaster strikes, you must already have training to help out.

      Classes are offered to those interested in becoming a part of the American Red Cross team. For more information contact Lara Gill at (229) 924-2026.