Listen up! Siren testing begins today in preparation for weather alerts

It is that time of year when the Clear Lake Police Department prepares for seasonal outdoor activities. Part of that preparation is the monthly testing of the Clear Lake and Ventura outdoor warning sirens.

The first test of the sirens will be today, Wednesday, March 29, at 10 a.m.

  Sirens will be tested on the first Monday of the month at 10 a.m., unless the Monday is a holiday. The makeup day for a holiday will be Tuesday.  Additional test dates are: April 3, May 1, June 5, July 3, Aug. 7 and Sept. 5 (Tuesday).

The department will continue to utilize social media, such as its Facebook page, as a reminder of siren test days as well as announcements in the Mirror-Reporter.

  The purpose of the sirens is to notify people who are outdoors with an audible warning to seek further information, and possibly shelter. When activated, sirens generally sound for a period of one minute. Sirens sounding outside the testing dates indicates severe weather for our area.

Please do not call 911 on testing days to ask why the sirens are activated. These calls tie up emergency lines into the department.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.  When are the sirens activated?

Generally, under the outdoor warning system guidelines, sirens will be sounded for: tornadoes (including warnings), thunderstorms with winds of 70 mph or greater (potential for whole trees to snap or uproot) or, golf ball sized hail or larger (potential for windows to break). The same siren tone will be used for all threats. The sirens may be sounded multiple times during the event. There will be no all-clear signal from sirens.

2.  What should I do when I hear the sirens?

When the sirens are heard tune to local media outlets to gain more information and possibly seek shelter.

3.  Why is there no all-clear signal?

People should be indoors seeking shelter and monitoring local media for updates on the storm.  The sirens are not designed to be heard indoors, although often they can be heard inside.  Sounding an all-clear signal may encourage people to go outside in order to hear it.

4.  Why will the outdoor warning sirens be sounded for hail and wind?

When thunderstorm winds exceed 70 mph, trees can be uprooted or snapped. Hail that is golf ball sized

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