Governor Easley Says State Ready to Communicate

Wilmington, NC – As forecasters keep an eye on Tropical Storm Ernesto,Governor Mike Easley warns residents to prepare for the hurricane season.

Easley urged families to have a plan for evacuation and communication. As for the state's emergency communication system, called VIPER, a study this year by the First Response Coalition raised concerns about VIPER's effectiveness since many municipalities have opted out of it.

Governor Easley says program is expanding and will be effective this hurricane season.

So it's in place, it's just not in place everywhere. So expanding as we speak, but the communications, especially for emergency management are very good and we've never had any problem with communication.

The state budget earmarks $8.1 million for the continued rollout of the emergency communication system.