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Severe Weather Awareness Day Statewide / Tornado Siren Testing Today

March 6, 2013

To: The Oberlin College Community

From: Marjorie Burton, Director of Safety and Security

Date: March 6, 2013

Statewide, today is Tornado Awareness Day. Many cities, including the City of Oberlin, will be testing Tornado sirens between 9:50 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.

The City of Oberlin Fire Department uses weather warning sirens in the community to warn residents when a tornado warning is issued or a tornado is sighted near the Oberlin area when they have enough advance warning time to activate the system. The siren nearest to campus is located on South Main Street. The standard siren signal consists of an alternating siren (ten seconds on, then ten seconds off) for a four-minute period. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is then activated on Oberlin Cable Co-Op TV stations.

The emergency siren system is only used for alerting the public to impending danger associated with severe storms and tornado warnings. When you hear the siren or any tornado weather advisory warning for our area, seek shelter immediately at the lowest level of your building, away from windows.

Since the National Weather Service issues all warnings, the fire department does not issue an all-clear signal; rather, residents are encouraged to monitor advent and expiration of weather advisories by standard broadcast means.

Siren tests occur at 11 a.m. on the first Wednesday of the month, from April through September. (Siren tests are not conducted during inclement weather to avoid confusion.) Listen for the test so you understand what you may hear during an actual alert. If you cannot hear a siren at your location, seek other ways of keeping informed: Weather Alerts on your phone or computer; a NOAA weather radio; alertness to changing weather systems in our immediate area.

Become aware of Oberlin College recommendations for safety during severe weather alerts by linking to this website information: http://new.oberlin.edu/office/safety-and-security/severe-weather/ Severe weather awareness and response procedures, tornado facts, and information about local community systems is explained at this site. Update your contact information for warning messages shared through our College rapid alert system after reviewing your personal contact information on file at http://oberlin.edu/warn

Oberlin Fire Department shares information on Tornado Safety Awareness at their site: http://www.oberlin-fire.com/safety/tornado_safety.html

Please take a few minutes now to educate yourself in severe weather advice. You may contact either Claudia.Ferrini@oberlin.edu or Marjorie.Burton@oberlin.edu for assistance or advice on seeking shelter in areas you frequent on campus.