Bentley to join ‘be ready’ day

Published 11:00 pm Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A 9/11 memorial service with Gov. Robert Bentley will highlight the state’s “Be Ready Day” activities Thursday on the Troy University campus.

Bentley will oversee the state’s memorial service at 1 p.m. in Sartain Hall. The program is open to the public.

Prior to that, the parking lot outside Sartain Hall will be filled from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. with all sorts of emergency response equipment and responders, standing ready to help educate the public about what they can do to “be informed, be involved and be ready.”

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“It’s sort of like an expo,” said Jeanna Barnes, Pike County EMA director. Beginning at 9 a.m. representatives from numerous agencies – from local fire, police and sheriff’s departments to the state EMA and Homeland Security – will have equipment set up for the public to view and representatives on hand to help educate and answer questions. Barnes said equipment will include fire trucks, police cars and even the state EMA’s communications trailer.

“This is really about helping you learn what you can do to be prepared in the event of any type of emergency,” Barnes said. “September is National Preparedness Month, and this is the state’s preparedness event.”

Members of the public who attend will have the opportunity to participate in interactive demonstrations and to learn about the role individuals can play in preparing for natural or man-made disasters.

“There will be a lot of information available,” Barnes said.

More than 300 school children from area schools also will take part in the event.

“Because Thursday is Sept. 8, and so close to the 10-year anniversary of 9/11 on Sunday, the governor’s office decided to go ahead and have the state’s memorial service here during this event.

“I hope we will have a good turnout for both the expo and the memorial service,” she said.

The event is sponsored by the Governor’s Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, the Alabama Department of Homeland Security, the Alabama Emergency Management Agency, the Pike County Emergency Management Agency and Troy University.