City of Tulsa could have used push notifications for debris pick up

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Updated: 8/27/2013 9:16 pm Published: 8/27/2013 4:56 pm

The city of Tulsa is preparing to launch a new service that will send both emergency and non-emergency notifications at home and on cell phones.

Users can sign up for Tulsa Alerts and the city, police and fire department will all be able to send notifications at home, on your cell, through text message, or through email.

It's a service other area communities already have but none the size of Tulsa.

"It's primarily for emergency notification. If there's a weather event or something that's threatening, if there's flooding along the Arkansas River or something like that, then we can use to notify people," said Bob Bledsoe, city spokesman.

Or if police need to warn people about something quickly.

"If the police Special Operations Unit has a situation in a neighborhood where they want to alert all the neighbors to stay in their houses, they can use it for that," he said.

People can also get notifications on non-emergencies.

"About 18 or 20 categories," he said.

Information on parks, City Council meeting agendas, events around town, even if a water line breaks and the city shuts down a road.

"We can select just that geographic area of people that probably use that street every day and notify them about the street closure," he said.

City officials said they might have even been able to use it during the storm debris removal process to tell you when your neighborhood's pickup would be.

Sign up on the city of Tulsa website. Notifications won't start until Sept. 9.

The service is free to residents of Tulsa and costs the city a little more than $100,000 a year to operate.

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