Starting today and throughout this weekend, countless people are expected to “Storm Area 51” in the Nevada desert to discover if alien secrets are true. The one thing that is “of this world,” however, is that if hundreds of thousands of alien-crazed fans show up, good safety communications systems need to be in place. The Nye County Sheriff’s Department has its defense shields up and is bracing for impact.
What started as a “gag” Facebook group by a college student, Matty Roberts, has turned into a real event for the local authorities. Roberts has since pulled his support for the event, citing lack of resources in the small town of Rachel, NV, fearing it would become another Fyre Festival-like disaster.
“There’s no safety or security that can really be promised,” Roberts told the Washington Post, calling the event a potential, “‘humanitarian disaster.’ I didn’t feel comfortable with inviting even my friends and family out to this event, let alone these thousands of strangers.”
Regardless, Nye County has made plans for what could be a tidal wave of hundreds of thousands of people. “We have a very thorough plan in place to cover almost every contingency, even the unforeseen. We’re prepared for a mass invasion of the Nevada National Security Site,” Lt. Adam Tippets, Operations Lieutenant for the Nye County Sheriff’s Department, told KVVU-TV.
In preparation, the department set up a “communications hub” inside a high-tech RV, equipped with radios, computers, and surveillance cameras. Emergency teams will be on standby, and Verizon Wireless has provided a COW to maintain reception should towers become overloaded.
“We’re not really sure what the turnout is going to be. It could be as many as 2.1 million or as few as 21,” added Tippets. “If even one percent of the people who said they are going to show up, it’s going to put a major strain on the communities around this area.”
September 20, 2019