RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — People living in the Hedingham and surrounding neighborhoods are concerned that there was no alert system activated during Thursday’s mass shooting.
As the memorial outside of the entrance to the community continues to grow, people are now asking even more questions.
A big question: why was there no official alert?
“I was working from home that day. When I closed my computer, I looked on Facebook. That’s when I started to see, on the Hedingham Facebook page, how things were unfolding and how people needed to shelter in place,” resident Eva Miller said.
That’s how she learned there was an active shooter in her neighborhood.
“I know some neighbors were out walking and police were informing them to go back in their houses,” Miller said. “That must have been so scary.”
She added that she was thankful she checked social media that night because she would have headed out the door to walk her dog at that time.
“Active shooter across the river,” read Jerry Karth.
He received that text from his neighbor Thursday.
Karth had been unaware of what was going on just down the road from his home.
“I had no idea until I got the text and turned on the TV,” he said.
Karth said it’s unacceptable.
“In today’s world, with technology, we have no reason not to send out alerts or things to protect people,” Karth said. “I would like to see an active shooter warning put out. So people know to take safety and where to go.”
Wake County Emergency Management has a notification system called “Ready Wake.” It allows officials to alert people about things such as flooding and police activity.
A county spokesperson also told CBS 17 it uses the Everbridge system, that allows important information to be sent out in a certain geographical area.
There is also a state-run emergency alert system.
Guidelines found through the state website indicate county emergency management officials have to contact state emergency management leaders before those messages get sent out.
FEMA has its own program: “Integrated Public Alert and Warning System.”
On its website, it does provide “imminent threat” notifications to the public, including alerts regarding active shooters.
People living in Hedingham told CBS 17 they did not get any of these alerts.
“Why aren’t we using that? Why aren’t we warning people about these situations?” Karth asked.
“Wake County Emergency Management did not receive a request to activate the system during the active shooter incident on Thursday,” A Wake County official told CBS 17.
It was suggested CBS 17 reach out to Raleigh officials.
“This is something we are looking into. The City will do a comprehensive after-action review of all steps taken during this incident, with the goal being to ensure communications with our community is a top priority,” A City of Raleigh spokesperson told CBS 17.