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The Sheriff’s Professional Standards and Communications Division encompasses Emergency Management and the 9-1-1 Communications Center. These functions are operated out of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) located in Lecanto, and fall under the direction of Captain Joe Casola.
The 9-1-1 Communications Center, also known as the Citrus County Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP), receives and dispatches all 9-1-1 and non-emergency calls within the geographical confines of the county. The center is consolidated, meaning they handle all calls for law, fire and emergency medical services in one location. This consolidated center is more efficient and allows for streamlined communication. The dedicated Communications Officers work 12 hour shifts, providing 24/7 service to the community. The 9-1-1 Center received national accreditation in 2007 and continues to maintain this recognition today. In 2019, the 9-1-1 center enhanced it capability by adding Text to 9-1-1. For more information on the Communications Center, contact Communications Manager Mike Story at 352-249-2741 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Emergency Management is the managerial function charged with creating the framework within which communities reduce vulnerability to hazards and cope with disasters. We do that through four phases: Prevention / Mitigation, Preparedness, Response and Recovery.
Through an inter-local agreement with the Citrus County Board of County Commissioners, Emergency Management functions for Citrus County fall under the Sheriff of Citrus County. Emergency Management has four key fundamentals. Those are: Life Safety, Hazard Mitigation, Property Preservation and Social Restoration.
Emergency Management is key to preparing citizens in the community and supporting our emergency response partners during manmade or natural disasters. Also under Emergency Management are the Citizen Information Lines (CIL). The CIL’s are used during times of disasters and provide information to the community such as sheltering, evacuations and other critical resources or information. We encourage people to only call 9-1-1 for real emergencies and call the CIL’s during a disaster for other information.
Citizen Information Lines: 352-249-2775 (Open during emergencies or disasters)
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates volunteers about disaster preparedness for the hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. CERT offers a consistent, nationwide approach to volunteer training and organization that professional responders can rely on during disaster situations, allowing them to focus on more complex tasks.
Community members can receive this the 9 week training consisting of 3 hour sessions for free. After completing, residents can join the Sheriff’s Office team and be available for future trainings or response operations. Topics include Disaster Preparedness, Medical Operations, Light Search and Rescue, Disaster Psychology and Terrorism.
The Citrus County Board of County Commissioners, acting within the Florida State Statutes, may order or recommend evacuation of specific areas of the county for reasons that include Natural Disasters (Hurricane, Fire, Flood), Man-Made Disasters (Rail, Hazardous or Transportation Incidents) or Technological Disasters (Power Loss).
Special Needs is a voluntary program that provides transportation, evacuation assistance and sheltering to residents during such times for those who do not have the means to evacuate or for those requiring health or medical considerations to the Special Needs Shelter.
The primary Special Needs Shelter is located at Renaissance, 3630 W Educational Path, Lecanto, FL 34461. However, this location may not always be used, depending on the type of incident. Follow local emergency official’s announcements of shelter location.
Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES)
The Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES), part of national association for Amateur Radio in the US, consists of licensed amateurs who have voluntarily registered their qualifications and equipment, with their local ARES leadership, for communications duty in the public service when disaster strikes.
Founded in 1914 by Hiram Percy Maxim as The American Radio Relay League, ARRL is a noncommercial organization of radio amateurs and is the parent of ARES. (ARRL 2020)
Citrus County Sheriff’s Emergency Operations has a dedicated group of volunteers who dedicate their time to disaster response and recovery, special events and critical issues. They may provide communications at emergency shelters, report severe weather conditions or pass along important information. Members are able to communicate locally, to our state of Florida Emergency Operations Center in Tallahassee or around the world.
We always are in need of additional volunteers and welcome you to apply.
To apply, complete the Sheriff’s Volunteer Application, have it notarized and submit it to the volunteer office by mail (1 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave., Inverness, FL 34450-4968) or drop it off at any Sheriff’s Office location.
For more information, you may call 352-249-2703. We look forward to hearing from you.
Lecanto Primary School will be the site for the Pet Friendly Shelter for Citrus County residents. Animal Control will be in charge of this shelter.
Plan your evacuation strategy and don’t forget your pet! Specialized pet shelters, animal control shelters, veterinary clinics and friends and relatives out of harm’s way are ALL potential refuges for your pet during a disaster. If you plan to shelter your pet, work it into your evacuation route planning.
Contact your veterinarian or local humane society for information on preparing your pets for an emergency.
Our community partner, The Clerk of the Court continuously strives to deliver the highest level of customer service during all emergency situations, posting important announcements on their website at www.citrusclerk.org and on their social media page at www.facebook.com/CitrusCountyClerk.
Emergency Management Officials can use reported damage information to assess and document damages within Citrus County. The importance of the initial local assessment of damages is essential in determining:
What happened and how it has affected individuals and communities
How residential, business, and infrastructure property has been affected
Which areas were hardest hit
Provides “situational awareness” to emergency mangers
What types of assistance may be needed (e.g., local, state, or federal)
Accurate and timely damage reporting is crucial to successfully requesting and receiving federal assistance in the form of either low-interest loans or grants to help citizens, businesses, and infrastructure recover from a disaster (during federally declared events only).
If you have any questions regarding the reporting of information, please reach out to our Emergency Management team via email at email@example.com.
Alert Messaging Program (AMP)
AMPlifying the message to save lives!
Using digital media boards in our community to spread the word of life saving information…
The Sheriff’s Emergency Management Alert Messaging Program or AMP, was created to amplify an emergency message from government authorities to the
community regarding natural and man-made disasters by using those businesses, not-for-profits or faith based organizations who utilize digital message boards in
front of their establishments. During an event, Sheriff’s Emergency Management would push out emergency
information for broadcast to the community on your digital message board.
Will we be bombarded with messages to broadcast? Not at all. AMP is designed for severe incidents only.
How does our business, not-for-profit or faith based organization join? Click here to download to application.
What kind of information is broadcast? Emergency notifications such as severe weather, flooding or evacuations.
Is there a cost to join or any special hardware? None at all. We would send you an email and or text message with the important broadcast and all you do is copy it into your digital messaging system .
Have more questions? Contact us!
Citrus County Sheriff’s Office
Division of Emergency Operations
352-249-2703 or email firstname.lastname@example.org