PENDER COUNTY -- Our area is growing and more people mean more emergencies. That's becoming very apparent in one local county. Pender County Emergency Management Director Eddie King said he's worked eight days straight, because he's had to respond to so many emergencies in the area. He says this amount of work is becoming the norm. King says the counties population has grown by 21 percent in the last eight years and with more people in the area -- comes an increase in emergency calls. To meet the demand fire departments and EMS are adjusting their staffing, so the communities needs are still being met. But the extra work has forced king to make some sacrifices. King said, "We don't have the time to spend event planning that we would really like to. Pender County is still prepared for a hurricane or natural disaster, but we would like to spend more time to be better prepared." That's why King is asking county commissioners to budget in additional personnel for his office. He'll find out if the commissioners granted his request when the budget is finalized in mid-June. King says he wants to let people know he's rarely in his office because he's out responding to emergency calls -- so if they cannot contact him call the sheriff's department. If it's an emergency, always call 911.
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