Emergency Siren Notification System
Emergency Sirens: General Siren Information
The siren locations are:
- In the area of M-36 and Chambers Road
- Pettysville Road and Rush Lake Road
- Chilson Road and M-36
- Strawberry Lake Road and Merrill Road.
These current locations cover all of the Lakelands Trail and Bennett Park along with a high percentage of the population of Hamburg Township. More weather sirens have been planned to be installed in the future.
What is the difference between a "Tornado Siren" and an "Outdoor Warning Siren"?
- The terms "Tornado Siren" and "Outdoor Warning Siren" generally refer to the same thing. The more correct term to use is "Outdoor Warning Siren" because an Outdoor Warning Siren can warn citizens about more than just tornados. It is also important to note that Outdoor Warning Sirens are an outdoor warning system. The sirens are not designed to be able to be heard inside homes.
What does it mean when a siren is activated?
- The sirens sound when it is not safe to be outside. When you hear the siren go off, go inside, take shelter, and if possible, turn on a radio or TV for more information.
Why can't I hear the siren in my house?
- Sirens are designed to be outdoor warning systems. Many individuals can hear sirens in their homes, but that is not their intended purpose. Sirens are only one part of the warning systems used to alert citizens. Weather radios, which are better suited to indoor warning, are also part of the warning systems used to alert citizens. Most newer weather radios have the capability to alert citizens inside their homes about dangerous situations through an alarm function.
When are the sirens tested?
- The outdoor warning sirens are tested on the 1st Saturday of every month at 12:00 p.m. (noon).
Activation Guidelines and Protocol
- Who activates the sirens?
- Sirens can be activated by Livingston County Central Dispatch (911)
- Sirens can be activated by Hamburg Township Fire Department
- Sirens can also be activated via other local Fire Departments
With regard to weather, why would the sirens be activated?
- A Tornado Warning
- A Severe Thunderstorm Warning WITH warned winds of 70 mph or greater
- The sighting of a Tornado by a reliable source (such as a trained weather spotter)
Why are the sirens being activated for Severe Thunderstorm Warnings with warned winds equal to or in excess of 70 mph?
- Winds of 70 mph are the equivalent to:
- EF 0 Tornado
- Strong Tropical Storm or Class 1 Hurricane
- In response to straight line winds during a summer storm where the sirens were not activated and several people were injured or killed by damage from the winds.
- There is a significant and real danger to life and property when winds reach approximately 70 mph
Is there an "All Clear" signal?
- There is no all clear sounding for the siren system. If the sirens are activated again it is generally because of a new threat or a warning has expired and a new warning has been issued. When the sirens sound for a second time, it does not mean it is safe to come out of shelter areas.
Are all of the sirens activated at the same time?
- The siren system has been created in such a way that not all sirens have to be activated at the same time, but can be if necessary. The idea is that only the sirens in the area affected will be sounded. The area where the sirens will be activated is generally determined by the area covered by the warnings issued by the National Weather Service.
What should we do when the sirens are activated?
- Take shelter and if possible listen to your weather radio, TV or radio for more information
When you hear sirens sound in Hamburg Township, tune to your local Emergency Alert System (EAS) station for further information. Primary EAS stations for Hamburg Township include:
How can I tell the difference between sirens that have been activated for thunderstorm warnings with 70 mph winds vs. a tornado warning?
- There are not different siren sounds for 70 mph winds vs. tornado warnings.
- Each citizen needs to take some responsibility for his or her own safety and find out why the sirens have sounded.
- Once again, the sirens are an outdoor warning system. Hearing the sirens just means it is not safe to be outside and individuals should go inside, take shelter and find out what is going on.
- If there is a severe thunderstorm warning, individuals must either read or listen to the text being produced by the national weather service to confirm if the sirens have been activated for strong winds.
HOW SHOULD I TAKE COVER?
- To "take cover" means to go inside immediately.
- The sirens sound when it is not safe to be outside.
- Make sure that everyone in your family knows the safest place to be in your home during an emergency.
- During a severe weather emergency a basement or another underground shelter is the safest place to be.
- If you do not have a basement, stay on the first floor and put as many walls between yourself and the outdoors as possible.
- No matter where you are sheltering, always try to shelter under a heavy piece of furniture. If you live in a manufactured home community, it is extremely important to identify the closest safe place to take cover and shelter before an event.
- If your manufactured home community does not have a storm shelter, consider speaking with the owner or manager about building or creating one. During severe weather, mobile homes are never a safe place to shelter, even if they are anchored to a foundation.
The sirens are going off, it isn't the 1st Saturday of the month, but it's a beautiful day, do I still need to go inside?
- Yes, anytime you hear the sirens go off and it is not the scheduled testing time you should go inside immediately. Remember, the sirens sound when it is not safe to be outside.
- As stated earlier, Outdoor Warning Sirens are most often used to warn of tornados, but they are also used for other things as well.
- Outdoor Warning Sirens are an All-Hazard warning system. If you hear the sirens activated and it isn't because of a tornado it may be because of a hazardous material spill or similar event in the area.