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1-800-PetMeds

Arab in Marshall county is proposing to remove Tornado Sirens (1 Viewer)

JayF

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Here is the link to the story. I honestly think it is a good idea. Most Americans have cell phones now or at least have access to some kind of radio or way to get an alert. These tornado sirens are not for people in doors anyway. Only very few people can even hear them in their homes. So it is important to do what is best for the community. What are your thoughts?

 

Mike S

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it might not be a bad idea since people can't be convinced to not rely on them anyway.

My question is how much does a siren cost if it costs $90,000 to repair 4 of them?
 

Snowyfbaby

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I don’t think it hurts to have them....tornado sirens have a certain nostalgia and history associated with severe weather.
 

Austin Dawg

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If they could find a more efficient way of creating different siren patterns or frequencies that maybe are activated depending on the situation and have to longer signal when a tornado has been confirmed.
 

Snowyfbaby

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If they could find a more efficient way of creating different siren patterns or frequencies that maybe are activated depending on the situation and have to longer signal when a tornado has been confirmed.
I love the ones that talk they tell you where and if it’s a real warning followed by the sound.
 

WesL

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Fair disclosure I grew up in Arab. I've ALWAYS said that FEMA etc should invest in giving each home a weather radio with battery backup. The sirens are great for parks and such but have never been a true answer for real alerts in homes.

When Annison started destroying chemical weapons they handed out radios to people within X amount of miles. The company that made those was based in Arab. Interesting to see things come full circle.
 

KoD

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I've thought about this for awhile and ultimately I feel the same way about tornado sirens as I do with electronic car parts. Making them digital is great and more convenient and effective and all that. I do want redundancy though so that the physical thing is still there if the digital upgrades fail.
Invest 200% in the adaption of electronic tornado alerts, but keep the old way of doing things there just in case.

It honestly should be dirt cheap to have a giant rotating blowhorn. If they cost $90,000 to repair 4 of them then somebody isn't just scraping off the top of that project, they're taking the whole cake and leaving crumbs.
 

_melody_

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I think they should keep them. I think that the more forms of warnings there are the better. There are a lot of people who live on farms in that area. If someone is outside working, a siren may be their best chance of getting the notification. Also, every form of notification is subject to failure. A few years ago there was a tornado that struck near our house and the weather radio transmitter was not working. The sirens woke me up and we went to our safe place. That was the only warning we had, even though we should have had others. Our house was not hit, but we were only a few miles away and that is too close for comfort.

Phone and radio batteries die, and power goes out in houses. The danger is too great not to have multiple ways of getting warnings. We have all been trained to recognize the sound of a tornado siren our whole lives, and we instinctively react to that. Sure, we may not always hear it, but we also sleep through our alarms, ignore the continual barrage of phone notifications with which we live and turn off our TV when we go to bed. Also, text messages can be delayed by a lot of time when they are sent out en masse. I have gotten some the next day, long after they were sent. Some people never watch the news and don't know anything may be coming, so they don't charge batteries or do anything else to prepare.

During the storms a few weeks ago, I got texts from multiple sources, had the emergency alarm go off on my phone, had calls from the EMA AND heard sirens. I had the best chance of surviving if I had been in the path of a tornado because I had the best chance of getting the message at the right time. There is no doubt that sirens should be the last resort, but sometimes you NEED that last resort to fall back upon, that "PAY ATTENTION NOW!" smack upside the head. Sirens have saved countless lives over the years. Just because there are more technologically advanced methods now doesn't mean that sirens have no more value. Any method can fail and we need all of the alternatives available to reach as many people as possible.

We need all of the warnings we can get and getting rid of sirens is taking away a big one that the population is already trained to use and understand. If people can't hear the sirens, we should consider more, possibly smaller and more targeted ones to supplement the big ones. The technology that exists now means that you could probably make smaller, better featured sirens for much less money than we spent in the past on those giant ones. Maybe we should consider that rather than just getting rid of them?
 

Snowyfbaby

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I've thought about this for awhile and ultimately I feel the same way about tornado sirens as I do with electronic car parts. Making them digital is great and more convenient and effective and all that. I do want redundancy though so that the physical thing is still there if the digital upgrades fail.
Invest 200% in the adaption of electronic tornado alerts, but keep the old way of doing things there just in case.

It honestly should be dirt cheap to have a giant rotating blowhorn. If they cost $90,000 to repair 4 of them then somebody isn't just scraping off the top of that project, they're taking the whole cake and leaving crumbs.
This 100%. It just being there doesn’t hurt.
 

CSimonds

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I think they should keep them. I think that the more forms of warnings there are the better. There are a lot of people who live on farms in that area. If someone is outside working, a siren may be their best chance of getting the notification. Also, every form of notification is subject to failure. A few years ago there was a tornado that struck near our house and the weather radio transmitter was not working. The sirens woke me up and we went to our safe place. That was the only warning we had, even though we should have had others. Our house was not hit, but we were only a few miles away and that is too close for comfort.

Phone and radio batteries die, and power goes out in houses. The danger is too great not to have multiple ways of getting warnings. We have all been trained to recognize the sound of a tornado siren our whole lives, and we instinctively react to that. Sure, we may not always hear it, but we also sleep through our alarms, ignore the continual barrage of phone notifications with which we live and turn off our TV when we go to bed. Also, text messages can be delayed by a lot of time when they are sent out en masse. I have gotten some the next day, long after they were sent. Some people never watch the news and don't know anything may be coming, so they don't charge batteries or do anything else to prepare.

During the storms a few weeks ago, I got texts from multiple sources, had the emergency alarm go off on my phone, had calls from the EMA AND heard sirens. I had the best chance of surviving if I had been in the path of a tornado because I had the best chance of getting the message at the right time. There is no doubt that sirens should be the last resort, but sometimes you NEED that last resort to fall back upon, that "PAY ATTENTION NOW!" smack upside the head. Sirens have saved countless lives over the years. Just because there are more technologically advanced methods now doesn't mean that sirens have no more value. Any method can fail and we need all of the alternatives available to reach as many people as possible.

We need all of the warnings we can get and getting rid of sirens is taking away a big one that the population is already trained to use and understand. If people can't hear the sirens, we should consider more, possibly smaller and more targeted ones to supplement the big ones. The technology that exists now means that you could probably make smaller, better featured sirens for much less money than we spent in the past on those giant ones. Maybe we should consider that rather than just getting rid of them?
I agree with you. I live in Marshall county. We spend lot of time outside and we don’t always carry our cell phones with us 24/7. One day we were outside working in the yard and the outdoor tornado siren went off. We weren’t under a tornado watch at the time. It was just a rogue storm that produced a small tornado in this county. As soon as the siren went off we went inside to get a report on what was going on. As soon as we got in the house it started to hail. If it weren’t for that outdoor siren we wouldn’t have known what was coming.

There are a lot of outdoor activities in this county. Hiking, boating, fishing, zip lining, camping, etc. With all of those outdoor activities I think having an outdoor siren would be beneficial.
 

maroonedinhsv

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One thing that I find interesting is that sirens are viewed as warnings for people who are outside because no one can hear them indoors. I wonder if that’s because modern houses are better insulated against sound, we have more noise pollution inside our houses, or a combination of the two. I distinctly remember easily hearing the sirens in our house when I was a child, but back then we only had the one small speaker in the tv (no loud surround sound), no white noise from tons of electronics/ceiling fans/etc, no dishwasher running, and the list could go on and on. I am certain that, when I was a child, tornado sirens would wake people up in the middle of the night and now folks are oblivious to them in the middle of the day while inside their houses.
 

Snowyfbaby

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One thing that I find interesting is that sirens are viewed as warnings for people who are outside because no one can hear them indoors. I wonder if that’s because modern houses are better insulated against sound, we have more noise pollution inside our houses, or a combination of the two. I distinctly remember easily hearing the sirens in our house when I was a child, but back then we only had the one small speaker in the tv (no loud surround sound), no white noise from tons of electronics/ceiling fans/etc, no dishwasher running, and the list could go on and on. I am certain that, when I was a child, tornado sirens would wake people up in the middle of the night and now folks are oblivious to them in the middle of the day while inside their houses.
I remember hearing them well when I was a child also but we lived 1/4 mile from it and I’m willing to bet now within the last decade the “siren mentality” campaign has just shut down nearly 60% of all functional sirens. So now it would be harder to hear. But I have to say I’m glad you brought this up because when I was a kid the police use to go street to street siren blazing during a tornado warning and that was no matter what city and that has ended also....that was an extra warning also we just no longer hear.
 

WesL

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Let's not forget with the right set of tones.....

 

warneagle

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I don't have a problem with removing them if they're a huge financial burden to maintain, but I kind of doubt that's the case. I understand that we want to discourage people from relying on them as their primary way of getting warnings, but they can still serve a useful backup function even if everyone has the phone/weather radio alerts. Redundancy isn't a bad thing in life-or-death situations.
 

Mike S

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One thing that I find interesting is that sirens are viewed as warnings for people who are outside because no one can hear them indoors. I wonder if that’s because modern houses are better insulated against sound, we have more noise pollution inside our houses, or a combination of the two. I distinctly remember easily hearing the sirens in our house when I was a child, but back then we only had the one small speaker in the tv (no loud surround sound), no white noise from tons of electronics/ceiling fans/etc, no dishwasher running, and the list could go on and on. I am certain that, when I was a child, tornado sirens would wake people up in the middle of the night and now folks are oblivious to them in the middle of the day while inside their houses.

what siren was closest to you? Cotton mill or maybe Ridgecrest? Or did you hear McDonnell like we did?
 

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