Public safety officials in the Binghamton area are working to update a plan to respond to emergencies caused by hazardous materials transported on railroads and highways.

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

Broome County Emergency Services director Brett Chellis says special attention is being given to recent disasters involving rail tankers in the United States and Canada.

Rail tankers filled with crude oil, liquefied petroleum gas and other dangerous materials roll through the region on a regular basis.

Speaking on WNBF Radio's Binghamton Now program, Chellis said there are "plenty of chemicals" that are routinely transported by rail through the county that could be hazardous and require a mass evacuation in the event of an accident.

Chellis noted technology now enables emergency services agencies to more quickly and efficiently notify people when an evacuation order is issued.

Chellis encouraged Broome County residents to register for the New York Alert system which enables people to quickly receive emergency information. Information about the service is available at the NY-Alert website.