Sirens in Stutsman County operated correctly during the simulated countywide tornado exercise Wednesday, April 28, except for one siren in the city of Streeter, said Jerry Bergquist, Stutsman County emergency manager and 911 coordinator.
“When we checked with the individual that was monitoring the siren in Streeter, the siren did not activate,” Bergquist said.
Stutsman County conducted the exercise at 11:15 a.m. Wednesday as part of Severe Summer Weather Awareness Week, simulating what occurs locally when a tornado warning is issued by the National Weather Service.
The goal of the exercise was to test the Communications Center’s internal notification procedures county-wide including the testing of area community siren systems. The siren systems for Jamestown, Buchanan, Cleveland, Medina and Streeter were tested, activated for about 3 minutes.
Streeter officials were made aware of the siren malfunction, Bergquist said.
“They have to determine what the malfunction is and make the necessary repairs,” he said.
Bryan Spitzer, who serves on the Streeter City Council, said the siren is located beside the Streeter Fire Department. He said if an issue arises with the siren, the Fire Department is notified and it contacts a company to address the problem.
“We just are in the process of doing that,” he said.
Because the National Weather Service did not send out “official tornado warning tones” as part of the simulation, its all-hazards weather radio system did not activate during the exercise. In addition, the Emergency Alert System (EAS) for AM/FM radio stations and cable TV providers was not activated. However, cable interrupt systems were tested manually, Bergquist said. In addition, the Stutsman Alerts notification system powered by Everbridge was also not activated for this test.
The Stutsman Alerts system allows individuals to sign up for immediate notification of up to six different weather warnings including tornado, thunderstorm, flood, flash flood, winter storm and blizzard. To sign up for Stutsman Alerts, go to the Stutsman County webpage at www.co.stutsman.nd.us and click on the Stutsman Alerts window. Choose to receive weather warnings via land-line telephones, cellphones (optional text messaging) and email. Stutsman Alerts is a no-cost way to receive immediate weather warnings, but registration including a Stutsman County street address is required to utilize the service. For those needing assistance to register, contact Stutsman County Emergency Management at 701-252-9093.