Broken Arrow Receives Complaints After Storm Siren Test
BROKEN ARROW, Oklahoma - If you're inside there's a good chance you will not be able hear a storm siren. That's the message the City of Broken Arrow is trying tell its residents, after officials received several complaints when they started siren testing.
Broken Arrow has 56 outdoor warning sirens within city limits. You can hear them from about a mile in each direction.
The sirens go off when the National Weather Service issues a tornado warning for the area in the path of a storm.
Broken Arrow resident, Barbara Whitesell, said, "You can hear inside and outside. You'd have to have really loud TV, loud music not to hear those sirens especially right here,"
Whitesell lives right under one siren on the city's south side. She hears not one, but three sirens when they go off.
The Broken Arrow Police Department said it is trying to tell residents they can't always rely on hearing warning sirens indoors.
Sergeant Thomas Cooper, with the Broken Arrow Police, said, "it's some public education is what we're striving for. A lot of people can hear them inside their house due to the location of the siren, but you have to remember that's not a guarantee that you'll hear them while you're inside your house,"
Cooper said the sirens blast in all directions, but turn to cover an entire area.
"You may hear it really strong one minute and as it spins you're going to hear it sort of fade off," Cooper said.
Broken Arrow resident, Lacy Hendrickson said she relies on the storm sirens as a last resort.
"Sometimes your electric can go out, you can't watch your TV so you never know if something's on its way. You need those sirens to know if it's close or coming towards ya," Hendrickson said.
Residents say it's a good idea to pay attention ahead of time when meteorologists are predicting severe weather.
"Especially if you're hard of hearing it makes sense when you can read that on the television that there is a storm warning coming then it's time to shut things off and listen and prepare on your own, even if you don't hear them," Whitesell said.
We're not always in front of our TV screens, so one of the best ways to stay in the loop when severe weather hits is to pull out your phone and download one of our apps to keep you informed.