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Greenwell speaks at Cornell about Kentucky's 2009 ice storm

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By Jimmie Earls

As everyone knows, the ice storm from this past January had a big impact on Kentucky residents. So why would Cornell University in New York be interested in what Washington County experienced during the crisis? Washington County Extension Agent Rick Greenwell just returned from a trip to Cornell where he discussed what the county did, and didn’t do, during and following the storm.

“Cornell’s extension people invited me to talk with them about our ice storm from the standpoint of emergency preparedness in the extension service,” said Greenwell. “We discussed what did we do, why did we do it, why didn’t we do things, who was responsible for what, and how we interacted with other agencies. Their extension people are very much like ours. They were very hospitable. It was a pleasure to have a relationship with that bunch of people.”

Greenwell was just one of many speakers who addressed the crowd of approximately 40 who attended in person, and the program was broadcast to other schools.

“I talked for an hour, but I ran out of time and didn’t get to say everything I wanted to say,” he added. “We talked about 72-hour self-sufficiency, which we didn’t have. I learned about that from Washington County Judge-Executive John Settles, and he said that we would have a 72-hour self-sufficiency from now on. We also talked about the threat of martial law concerning fuel. With people from Lebanon and Danville to get our gas, we virtually ran out everywhere at one point. There’s a need to protect our fuel source for emergency people and our rescue people, and that was a shock."

See the complete story in this week's Springfield Sun!