Free weather radio giveaway geared at promoting flood insurance - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Free weather radio giveaway geared at promoting flood insurance

LAWTON, Okla._ There is a weather radio giveaway here and it is all about protecting residents living in flood zones.

The handout is backed by the City of Lawton's Stormwater Management Division, who poured $2,000 into the program to better equip homes in danger areas and promote the importance of flood insurance.

Severe weather is nothing new to Texoma, and this time the city is focusing on flooding. The weather radios will be given out to 100 residents on a first-come first-serve basis.

"One of the strategies of mitigating the hazards within Lawton is to educate citizens," says Cynthia Williams, an environmental specialist with the city.

Only 100 radios will be handed out despite more than a thousand homes along the city's creeks who received a letter in their mailbox about their eligibility in the program. Williams says that's all the budget would allow.

"Hopefully it will alert people before the storms so that we don't have any casualties," says Williams, who wishes everyone living in the designated floodplains would be able to get a free radio.

The radios give real-time alerts from the National Weather Service (NWS) in times of severe weather and prompt people to either take cover or evacuate the area. The program, Williams says, is less about the free radios and more about the importance of flood insurance.

"The only way that you are going to be compensated for your losses is if you have flood insurance," says Williams.

Local insurance professionals say for those living in or around flood zones it is always best to stay one step ahead of the game.

"You can cover your house and your contents for less than $200 a year, and it's peace of mind," says Larry Neal, of J T Neal Insurance.

More than 50 of the 100 weather radios available have already been handed out. The radios are currently out of stock but more are expected to arrive at the Stormwater Management Division, 2100 SW 6th Street, on March 3. Eligible residents can call (580) 581-3478 for more information. 

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