We are in severe weather season here in Southern Indiana, so it's important to know why emergency sirens are activated.

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Are Weather Sirens Becoming Background Noise?

It seems like every time we've heard thunder recently, the outdoor weather sirens are activated. That is an exaggeration, but I've seen people on social media say that it's easy to just ignore them if you hear that sound a lot.

So, who decides when to sound the emergency sirens? Is it the same for every county in Southern Indiana? What should you do when you hear the emergency sirens? I have done a little research to hopefully clear the air about outdoor warning sirens.


 Outdoor Warning Siren System: Ensuring Safety in Severe Weather and Emergencies

According to the National Weather Service, it means that something life-threatening is happening and you should go indoors and get more information from local media. The sirens are meant to be heard outdoors, as a signal to go inside. That is why you may not hear the sirens inside your house or workplace. Each county has specific guidelines to follow for activating the outdoor sirens.

Vanderburgh County

In the Evansville and Vanderburgh County area, there are 40 outdoor weather sirens.

When the National Weather Service issues a Severe Thunderstorm Warning or a Tornado Warning, The County Central Dispatch Center activates the sirens. The Outdoor Warning Sirens are operated by the Evansville/Vanderburgh Co. Central Dispatch.  The Emergency Management Agency is responsible for the administration, testing, and maintenance of the sirens.  Evansville/Vanderburgh Co. will activate warning sirens for any life-threatening emergency, including severe weather or hazardous chemical spills.

Warrick County

There are 18 outdoor weather sirens throughout Warrick County. It's important to note that you should not call 911 to find out why the sirens are going off.

When a severe weather warning has been issued for Warrick County by the National Weather Service. When a public safety officer (police, fire or EMS) reports sighting a tornado. A trained Skywarn spotter has reported a tornado. There is NO, ALL CLEAR signal. Tune in to local radio or TV for information and instructions.

Be Prepared

The best thing that you can do to stay safe during emergency weather situations is to pay attention to the forecast and tune in to local TV and radio so you know when to take cover. Also, remember that the Emergency Sirens can also be used for a community emergency situation.

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