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Outdoor Warning Sirens to be Activated Wednesday For Statewide Tornado Drill in Iowa

Written by on March 22, 2022

Ottumwa, Iowa – The Cities of Ottumwa, Agency, Eddyville and Eldon and Cardinal Schools will be participating in a statewide tornado drill planned for Wednesday, March 23, 2022. State officials will issue a test tornado watch over the NOAA weather radio at 10 AM Wednesday.  If severe weather threatens on Wednesday, the test will be cancelled.  

Residents are encouraged to monitor the local media, NOAA Weather Radio and/or the National Weather Service for current weather information.   The National Weather Service issues severe weather related information across multiple platforms, both public and private, simultaneously.

Outdoor Warning Sirens are sounded to warn people outdoors of confirmed hazardous weather conditions. The following is the criteria for setting off the system regarding Severe Weather:

1. Tornado Warning issued by the National Weather Service

2. Report of a tornado from law enforcement, fire department, emergency management or NWS trained spotter

3. Wind Speed 70 MPH or greater indicated by National Weather Service or local instrumentation

4. Hail 1.75 inch in diameter or greater forecasted by National Weather Service or observed by law enforcement, fire department, emergency management or NWS trained spotter

Outdoor Warning Sirens are a “take cover” signal and do not sound an “all clear” signal. It is possible for someone to receive severe weather information on a cell phone application or over the internet prior to the Outdoor Warning Sirens being activated.   This is a normal occurrence.  

Please remember, 9-1-1 is an emergency phone number for reporting emergencies.  Do not call 9-1-1 to ask questions about a severe weather event.