Crook County agencies will tweet together

One Twitter feed to quickly update police, fire, health info

Crook County joins Twitter forces

PRINEVILLE, Ore. - Crook County is hopping aboard the Twitter train. Several agencies, including the sheriff's office, fire and rescue, health department and Prineville police, plan to use it to get the word out quickly.

"This is our kickoff week so right now -- our first message is just a greeting," Prineville police Capt. Michael Boyd said Tuesday. "We haven't had a calamity yet. We will -- I promise you, we will."

Not if, but when that happens @crookcounty911 is the place where important information can be sent out to the masses.

"Or a lost child, rather than having four or five police officers looking, we'd like to have 150 people looking for that same lost child," Boyd said.   

Combined Twitter accounts like this have proven successful across the nation. Unlike press releases, Twitter can reach people and the media when crisis hits right away.

So far they have around 30 followers.

"As soon as the word spreads, it becomes an important tool," Boyd said.

There is a generation of people who are less inclined to use Twitter.

"For a lot of us, Twitter isn't something we've naturally gravitated towards," said Karen Yeargain of the Crook County Health Department.

The agencies involved in @crookcounty911 say they will keep track of the demographic following them.

"If I can learn, it anyone can learn it," Yearagin said.

It could be worth the time.

"Just jump, just do it and sign up for the @crookcounty911 Twitter feed, so you can get the latest and greatest, if something really is happening," Yeargain said.

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