Find answers to some frequently asked questions about the Genasys Protect platform.
What is Genasys Protect?
Genasys Protect is an evacuation management tool that helps communities and first responders more effectively plan, communicate, and execute evacuations. It is a platform where residents can look up their addresses using the search bar and use the zone map to find evacuation information for their area.
Why are evacuation zones important?
Pre-established evacuation zones help fire, law, and emergency service agencies prepare for, streamline, and reduce confusion around the evacuation process so that roads are clear for those who need to evacuate quickly. By evacuating the most at-risk zones first, emergency personnel are able to manage the traffic flow and more easily prevent the traffic jams that occur when an entire town or city tries to evacuate all at the same time. It also provides a common reference system for all first responders and the community.
When I enter my address into the Genasys Protect site, why don’t I see the best route to evacuate? How will I know where I should go?
Evacuation routes are always incident-specific because the best route to take is always relative to the location and type of threat. When an emergency evacuation occurs, make sure to check your county’s alerts and open Genasys Protect to review the status of your zone. When it’s time to evacuate, pay close attention to your surroundings and look out for law enforcement directing traffic.
To prepare further, you should become familiar with your zone, both on the platform and out in the real world. Take the time to walk or drive around areas in your zone that you are less familiar with and locate the fastest routes to nearby major roadways to ensure you are familiar with the various ways of getting in and out during an emergency. Ideally, you should be able to find your way even without access to a map or if you lose internet access. We recommend taking a screenshot of your zone and its surrounding area, printing it out, and drawing out multiple potential exits that you can reference in the case of a disaster.
What will happen once it’s time to evacuate?
During an emergency, first responders will alert you to the threat through your county’s alert system (via text, call, or email) and may also post updates on social media. If you have not registered for your county’s alert system, do so now to ensure that you are in the loop (if you don’t know how to register for alerts, check out this article). Pay close attention to the zones that have an Evacuation Warning and mandatory Evacuation Orders. You can check to see if your zone has been affected at protect.genasys.com.
Is there a Genasys Protect mobile app?
The Genasys Protect mobile app for Apple and Android can be downloaded on your devices. It contains all the same functions as the website, with the additional feature of being able to follow a zone to receive push notifications about status changes to that zone.
What’s the difference between Genasys Protect and Google or Apple Maps? Can I plug in an address and get directions to another location?
Genasys Protect is not a navigation tool like Google or Apple Maps, which means you cannot plot directions or receive evacuation directions.
We recommend downloading the Waze app and using it to navigate during an emergency, as Genasys automatically sends road and zone closure information to Waze, which you will be able to see and use to determine your evacuation route. However, please remember that it is crucial to always follow directions from emergency response personnel first and foremost, and connectivity may fail during an emergency, so don’t rely on navigation apps to tell you where to go. Be sure to know your area, and have several different evacuation routes planned from your house.
I thought I already had an evacuation zone, but in Genasys Protect it is different. Did something change?
All zones in Genasys Protect are published by the county and are authoritative. Genasys works directly with each county we serve and all information for a zone or county listed on the site has been approved by the county. If your county had evacuation zones before joining Genasys, it is possible the boundaries changed to take into account things like population density, geography, law and fire jurisdictions, traffic flow, etc. If you are seeing a discrepancy or have any questions, please contact email@example.com.
Where does the information in Genasys Protect come from and who keeps it updated?
Your county worked directly with Genasys to add and approve all of the information for your zone, and the appointed emergency response personnel update the statuses and information during emergencies.
Did my county participate in developing our evacuation zones in Genasys Protect?
Yes! All of the zones in Genasys Protect have been developed and approved through close collaboration with law, fire, and emergency service agencies in your county.
Can I evacuate before my zone is under an Evacuation Order status?
You can certainly evacuate early, or if you see an immediate threat. An incident may behave unpredictably and rapidly, meaning it is possible that your zone status may not always be updated ahead of the threat. If you feel unsafe, evacuate immediately. Genasys Protect is simply a resource to give you additional information to help you make evacuation decisions.
Why is my zone identifier so cryptic? Why doesn’t it just have a name?
The first three letters represent your city’s name (or if you are in an unincorporated area - your county), the E is short for Evacuation, and the last three numbers are the unique code that distinguishes your zone from the others in your area. This system is consistent across your county and makes it easy for first responders to plan and execute evacuations. The zone identifier system provides each zone with a globally unique ID so there is no confusion about which zone is being referred to.
Do I need to pay to use Genasys Protect?
No, you do not need to pay. The cost of Genasys Protect is paid for by the county, either through tax dollars, or through grants or nonprofits. You can access Genasys Protect any time at protect.genasys.com.
I noticed that my zone has a letter attached on the end of it. What is the difference between zone E005 and E005-A?
During an incident, first responders may need to split your zone into multiple sections in order to evacuate community members or repopulate a zone in the most effective way. If your zone contains a letter on the end (example: E005-A, E005-B, E005-C), this means that your original zone (E005) was split up. Type in your address at protect.genasys.com to make sure you have the right information and follow all instructions for the zone you are given.
Can I find evacuation shelters in Genasys Protect?
Yes, you will have the ability to view temporary evacuation points, which include evacuation centers, animal shelters, and other resources. Generally, these evacuation points are not visible to the community until an emergency occurs because the location must be relative to the location and type of incident.