A low-power AM radio station went on line recently in Portola Valley. The broadcast signal is intended for town-wide communications during major emergencies and can be heard on car radios and at nearly all residences in town.
The signal at 1680 Khz is running a looped message with information on how to prepare for an emergency. The system is capable of live broadcasts, and prerecorded messages are easily uploaded. "This technology will reduce reliance on telephone and cable lines which are at high risk of failure in the event of a natural disaster," the town said in its announcement.
The town allocated $30,000 in the 2012-13 budget for the project and paid $23,500 for the radio and about $7,500 for the antenna, officials said. Both are located at Town Center.