The Tehachapi Police Department is changing its emergency notification system to the public.

The City of Tehachapi, with the recommendation of Police Chief Kent Kroeger, will be using the Nixle system in the coming months to alert the public by text and phone of potential emergencies in the area.

“The City of Tehachapi currently contracts with CodeRED for Emergency Notification System services,” Kroeger said at a City Council meeting on Sept. 19. “We found it difficult to launch emergency notifications using this system.”

The Chief said CodeRED was infrequently used and the contract expires in November.

He reported that a large percentage of public safety agencies currently use Nixle to provide emergency alerts.

“Everbridge Incorporated or Nixle is a community information service built exclusively for secure and reliable communications,” Kroeger said. “It is built on the most secure, reliable and high-speed platform, ensuring that communications are trusted and accurate. Nixle provides a standardized service for consumers to receive immediate and credible neighborhood-level public safety and community information, via text, email or the web.”

The chief also reported the service is less expensive by almost $2,000 a year.

“The annual fee for the Nixle service is $5,750 a year, and a one-time implementation and set-up fee of $500,” he said. “These fees are included within the existing Police Department budget for our previous emergency notification system. Nixle also offered to include one month free of service (October 2016) to help bridge the discontinuation of CodeRED and start up of Nixle.”

The department has not yet set up a process for residents to sign up.