SPARTANBURG COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Staying safe means knowing what is happening around you, and Spartanburg County has a system they said is working well.

Emergency Services for the county has been using the Everbridge Emergency Notification System for a year. This system lets people know about severe weather alerts from tornados to missing persons.

“It’s been very successful, and one reason why we did the switch is because Everbridge comes with a large amount of community data,” said Robbie Swofford.

Robbie Swofford, with Emergency Management, said if there is an emergency in the county, this alert system lets residents’ know.

“The beautiful thing is that you’re getting that notification just by being a Spartanburg County resident,” he said. “When there’s severe weather or whether it’s a hazmat spill or a missing person, we’ve had several missing people located successfully with this system.”

Swofford said since they switched, 15,000 people have chosen to use the system.

“Whenever I’m driving around Spartanburg, especially, if there’s like lightning or a very bad storm coming, I get the text messages,” said Gus Ballard.

Gus Ballard said he has had the alerts on his phone for 3 to 4 months.

The alert system lets you filter the type of alerts you’ll get.

“I do the weather stuff and the missing persons,” said Ballard.

Emergency Management said people should have more than one emergency notification system, in case one fails. For example, having this alert system and a weather alert radio.

Ballard said it helps him stay aware of the situations around him.

“Everyone has some kind of story in the family, something went bad, and you keep thinking what could I have done? Maybe I need to be more aware of what’s happening around me. Maybe I’m the one that can help,” said Ballard.

“You can sign up or cancel your alert system at any time. For more, click here.

Right now, Swofford said the data shows over 22,000 people in the county currently use the Everbridge system for alerts.