emergency twitter

It was fascinating last night - there was a tornado west of here (in Mena, Arkansas), and I discovered twitter can be used as an emergency warning service. The posts started coming in early that there was a serious storm (it wasn't bad at all in Conway - although Mina was forced to move to a central room to escape the thunder), and then reporting hail and finally a tornado. Lance Turner examines the phenomenon in more detail, noting some of the state officials who were posting details as the storm developed. This is perhaps the first time I've thought twitter might be more than another goofy social media service.

Jason commented:

Public Service New Hampshire (my electric company - http://twitter.com/psnh) used it in a similar way during the huge ice storm this winter.  They were communicating directly with customers during a crisis situation and responding very quickly to their comments/requests.  It was very efficient and it helped them a lot in the PR department during that mess.  A competitor had similar problems durinng the storm but also had poor communication with customers -- and that company came off looking much worse than PSNH.

on Fri Apr 10 11:34:00 2009

Anonymous commented:






on Sat Apr 11 00:27:25 2009

David commented:

I take it they announced the award for finding the people who cut the cables in CA (and the subsequent increase in the award) over Twitter?

on Sat Apr 11 10:02:37 2009

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