Shelter, emergency options available during cold spell this week

Becky Vargo • Updated Jan 29, 2019 at 10:43 AM

Ottawa County Emergency Management, along with partner agencies, is closely monitoring the cold weather forecasted for this week.

Below are resources available to the citizens of Ottawa County to ensure they remain safe and have access to emergency needs during this time.

Warming Centers

The Grand Haven Community Center, 421 Columbus Ave., is available for warming from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The coffee is on if anyone needs to warm up due to loss of heat at their home or any other reason.

In Case of Power Outages

Grand Haven City Hall, 519 Washington Ave., has a back-up generator for heat and will be used until folks can make other arrangements or the primary shelter is open.

United Methodist Church of the Dunes, 717 Sheldon Road, is the primary Red Cross shelter for the City of Grand Haven. The church does not have a back-up generator, so it will take some time for Red Cross to get portable heat to the building. Church of the Dunes will only be open as a Red Cross shelter for a larger scale emergency, such as a power outage.

Harbor Transit buses will be available for emergency transportation.

Extreme Cold Weather Tips

Check on your elderly neighbors and those with medical conditions.

Layers of clothing work best for warmth. Cover your mouth and face.

Fill up vehicles with gas.

Stock food/water essentials for a three-day period.

Keep cell phones charged.

Avoid travel if you can.

If you lose heat and need help, call 911. Grand Haven Department of Public Safety Officers will assist with transportation to a warm location.

Go to www.smart911.com to create or update your safety profile. This information gives Ottawa County Central Dispatch and Ottawa County Emergency Management the ability to use your emergency contacts, address, and any special medical or emergency needs in the event of a 911 phone call from your mobile phone.

If you “opt-in” to emergency alerts, it also gives Ottawa County Emergency Management the ability to send emergency alerts to your phone. SMART 911 has developed a mobile application available for you to download for android and apple devices.

United Way 211

For emergency events, call 911.

For non-emergency situations involving individual assistance you can use United Way’s 211 call hotline and chat line. To contact United Way’s 211 center, dial 211 by phone or go online to www.hwmuw.org/211


Further information can be found by following Ottawa County Emergency Management on Facebook at #OttawaEM, and signing up for alerts through SMART 911.

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