Weather warnings are officially issued by the National Weather Service (NWS) and are received by the Lucas County Sheriff’s Dispatch.
In the event of a tornado sighting, prior to an official NWS warning; Law Enforcement, Fire / EMS personnel or Trained-Spotters can request that the sirens be activated.
The system is NOT activated for thunderstorms, unless those storms are predicted to include 75 mph or higher winds (which has the potential to create severe damage/ destruction and loss of life; similar to a tornado).
The warning sirens will NOT be activated to signal an “all clear”.
In the event that a previously issued tornado warning expires, and the NWS issues a new tornado warning for the area, the warning system will be activated again in response to the new warning.
Activated sirens sound a steady tone for 3 minutes. There is no “up and down” siren cycle – the siren blast will remain constant.
The sirens are tested once a month on the first Friday of the month, at noon to ensure proper operation. The sound is a steady tone for 1 minute. There is no “up and down” siren cycle for the warning sirens; the siren blast will remain constant. If a severe weather watch or warning is in affect for Lucas County prior to 12:00 p.m. on a scheduled test day, the sirens may not be tested on that day.
If testing is required at any time outside of the normal monthly testing schedule, Lucas County EMA will send out a Lucas County Alerts message, as well as notify the media; to better ensure awareness by the public of the additional testing.
The intent of the sirens is to provide ample warning for persons to protect themselves and seek additional information regarding the issue at hand. Because of this, sirens may sound before hazardous conditions exist. Due to the nature of severe weather, hazardous conditions may also develop before an activation of the sirens is possible. Lucas County has a county-wide siren system. Therefore, although a tornado warning could be issued by the NWS for only part of the county, all Lucas County sirens would be activated. Thus, it is important to tune into other avenues of information (i.e. NOAA weather radio, local media, etc).
Lucas County EMA recommends all households be as proactive as possible to stay informed of situations affecting their area. This includes using a NOAA All-Hazards radio, signing up for Lucas County Alerts at www.lucascountyalerts.com, and tuning into local media when the sirens are sounded.
If you realize that a siren is not functioning properly, please contact Lucas County Emergency Management Agency staff at 419-213-6503. They will need to know the siren location and description of the problem in order to direct the maintenance/repair to the malfunctioning siren.