Outdoor Siren System

What is the Outdoor Warning Siren System?

Atchison County's outdoor warning siren system consists of 11 strategically placed sirens throughout the county as an early warning device to alert citizens outdoors of imminent severe weather.  See map.

The outdoor warning siren system is an effective method of outdoor notification, but Atchison County Emergency Management recommends a duplication of ways to receive warnings and notifications. In other words, it is best to have more than one way to be warned of potential dangers. Warning and notification can be received by monitoring the following: 

  • NOAA Weather Radios
  • Internet
  • Local Media Outlets (Television and Radio)
  • Sky Conditions
  • Outdoor Warning Sirens

Developed as an early warning system of severe weather to persons outdoors, the system should not be relied upon for early warning to individuals indoors. Air-conditioning, thunder, wind, rain, and other conditions can cause the sirens not to be heard indoors (even if sirens can be heard indoors during tests). Sirens are also subject to equipment malfunction as well as failure due to damage from lightning strikes. This is another reason to have numerous ways to receive warning and notification. Furthermore, sirens do not provide any information concerning the type of threat or exact location of the potential danger. For this reason, if you are outdoors and hear a siren, you should seek shelter immediately as the threat may be in your immediate area.

There is NO all clear signal.  Listen to your battery-powered NOAA All Hazard Radio or your local radio or television station for updated information and to determine when conditions are safe.

The Sirens are tested the 1st Wednesday of each month at 10:00 am from March-September.  Additionally, each siren is automatically tested each morning at 3:00 am.  This is an automatic poll conducted by the computer software program.

Individuals, families, and businesses are strongly encouraged to use NOAA weather radios to receive warnings and emergency information. Atchison County Emergency Management sells these radios at cost for $30.00 for CERT.