City tests tornado warning system

KNWA

SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. (KNWA) —The City of Siloam Springs tested its tornado outdoor notification system Monday, Dec. 2 on a new day. This is also the first time the system was tested from a remote location. The changes are in place following October’s tornadoes when the alarms were not sounded on time. The 7 outdoor notification systems will now be tested on the first Monday of every month instead of Friday. The 8th alarm system is currently not operational.

The city is looking at several areas where they can improve the warning system following the delayed sounding of the alarms back in October.
City officials say the change will give staff more time during the week to deal with any issues that come up and make repairs. The system will only be tested on days when there is clear weather, so people know it’s a test and there’s no confusion.  If the weather is bad on Monday, they have an entire week to conduct the test.

Siloam Springs Police Captain Derek Spicer said the police and fire departments are working with technology that would allow them to login away from the office and remotely activate the system. Intensive weather and storm tracking trainings are also in the works.

“We’ll be doing some in house training with individuals who monitor the weather for a living who will volunteer to come in and assist the police and fire departments and just increase our knowledge,” Spicer said.

The system is designed to be heard outdoors. Spicer recommends you to have a warning system set up on your cellphone to be alerted indoors.
Spicer said everything went smoothly during the alarm system test today and that the city is looking for other ways to improve alerts.

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