The Center for Domestic Preparedness is hoping to make Calhoun County, AL – the county in which the FEMA training institution is located – one of the ’most prepared’ counties in the nation. 

The center has been working with local elected officials, members of the county’s emergency management agency, and local responders to identify gaps in the county’s ‘preparedness posture.’  At the same time, it’s been working with experts from across FEMA to identify things the county might use or do to fill those gaps. 

“There’s no reason we (the CDP and FEMA) shouldn’t be able to help the county ‘considerably move’ the (preparedness) dial here, particularly since it’s in our own backyard,” said CDP Superintendent Tony Russell, who is championing the effort. 

“This could possibly also be a model for other communities to emulate,” he said. 

According to the latest U.S. Census, in 2016, Calhoun County encompasses 612 square miles and has about 115,000 residents.  

The main threats to the area are tornadoes, floods and winter storms, including ice storms.