Mother Nature kept the Lafayette County Emergency Management department busy in 2022.
“This year has had its own sets of challenges but we are thankful and proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish,” said Director Steve Quarles. “We have several things we are looking forward to in 2023.”
In 2022, the National Weather Service in Memphis issued three tornado warnings, 18 severe thunderstorm warnings, three flood warnings, one flash flood warning, three excessive heat warnings, one winter storm warning, three freeze warnings, one wind chill warning and one high wind warning.
LCEMA responded to six search and rescue deployments, 10 mutual aid calls to other agencies, and seven UAS drone missions.
Quarles said the department has been able secure multiple grants to help acquire more assets to be better prepared for any emergency.
“We’ve also added a public information officer to our office, continued to build upon the Long Range Planning Committee and started the groundwork for a Local Emergency Planning Committee,” he said.
Lafayette County EMA has been awarded a total of $408,582 in grants from FEMA and Homeland Security. The agency has applied for a $3,000,000 Emergency Operations Center grant.
LCEMA did nine public awareness presentations in 2022 with Boy Scouts of America, Lafayette County Upper Elementary, Oxford Boys and Girls Club and the Lafayette County Technical Center.