The Sleepy Eye Police Department’s communication tool is undergoing some changes. This will be largely an informational article about out Nixle system. Sorry to those who are not interested, but I plan on covering the system and then talking about the changes that have been made.

For those who do not know, Nixle is the company that we push information alerts out through. Most often we use the system for declaring snow emergencies. We have also used this system to notify residents of scam alerts. We do not usually put out scam alerts, but when they involve a local business, we have put them out. For example, the last scam involved the New Ulm Medical Center. We have also put alerts when there is a dangerous situation the public needs to be aware of.

Overall, I am a big fan of the system and how it allows us to put out information that is important. We try hard not to overuse the system — we do not want to water down our messages by having so many put out that nobody pays attention to them.

To sign up, all you do is text 56085 to 888777 and it automatically enrolls your phone number. People have the option of going to the site and adding an email address as well. In the past, when we put out alerts people would get a text message and one to an email address, if there is one associated with the account. The large change that Nixle has made is that if you have a phone number and an email address connected to your account, you will only receive the message by email.

If you still want the text message you will have to remove your email address from the account, or you will have to add the new Nixle app. The app is available through both the Apple and Goggle stores. The company is called Everbridge, the app icon is orange with 3 crossed white lines that looks like a wave. I have added the app; I believe that all you must do is search the zip code and subscribe to the feed. When you search the Sleepy Eye zip code two feeds appear: The Sleepy Eye Police Department’s and the Brown County Sheriff’s. You will need to subscribe to both if you want both feeds. If anyone has any issues, please let me know and I will be willing to help anyone sign up.

Stay safe, I hope everyone is doing well.