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Sirens Sound for Statewide Tornado Drill

Posted: Thursday, April 8th, 2010 at 6:49 am

Sirens sounded across Iowa yesterday morning as part of a statewide tornado drill.

Washington and Keokuk County Emergency Management Coordinator Larry Smith says they treated it like a real situation to test the various facets of emergency response.

Smith as well as Washington County Sheriff Jerry Dunbar, 911 Supervisor Cara Sorrells, Washington Police Chief Greg Goodman and WeatherEye Meteorologist Laura Lockwood spoke with KCII during the drill about what their roles are during severe weather.

KCII also tested it’s emergency alert system, backup generator and severe weather operating procedures.

In Washington County the 911 Communications Center is responsible for activating them, depending on what weather conditions are like at specific locations.

911 Supervisor Cara Sorrels stresses that that the sirens are designed to alert people who are outdoors. She says people inside should rely on weather radios.

Besides activating the sirens, Sorrells’ office also relays important information from the National Weather Service and storm spotters to local media, and emergency responders.