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When Sirens Meant Something

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Does anyone else think that tornado sirens are being overused? It seems like they are where I live.

Tornado sirens are supposed to warn people about possible danger within a close proximity, not counties away.

They are sounding them for thunderstorms now and making people panic when there is no need for it.

Don't get me wrong, it's better to be safe than sorry, but it kind of seems like the boy who cried wolf.

People won't pay attention to the sirens if they are basically just a warning for rain.

This is of course just my opinion and I'm ready for the argument to start. :lol:

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It's not like that where I live. They rarely sound the sirens and when they do you know it's a bad storm.

I was in Memphis last month and they seemed to do things differently. The sirens were going off constantly and no one really cared. From what I understand they turn them on by county and not localized areas.

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I agree. The warnings on tv have improved, the narrow it down to the path of the storm. The sirens still sound in the whole county. Lately they have started sounding the sirens even if there is strong straight line winds. I think people are going to get used to the siren not meaning anything. Not good.

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That's what happened in Japan, those folks have been dealing with tsunami warnings their whole life with nothing extraordinary happening until this year. I'm sure they were sittin' in their houses, bars, or boats when they heard that siren and stayed put cause they had been conditioned into a false sense of security. Poor them. Sorry to highjack, but if i were born in Japan, a tiny island, knowing it sat near a major fault line, I'm not so sure I would have felt comfortable not moving somewhere else far away. But yeah, if a tornado like the one that recently tore through Mississippi and Alabama came back for seconds, I would want every siren blasting as long and as loud as possible for as many to hear. Just stick with better-safe-than-sorry mentality. They are sounding them for thunderstorms now because they help fuel the tornadoes that have hit recently which were so sporadic and unpredictable. That is all.

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I completely agree. If a tornado isnt on its way or visually seen dont sound it. I dont pay attention to them anymore past looking outside to see whats going on and maybe watch the weather on tv. They sound those freaking things every time a dark cloud comes over with wind.

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They do a good job down here.

When you hear them you know its bad. I've heard them next to my house twice and each time it was really bad.

They also test them a lot but they only do that down here in the mornings with blue skys.

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Tornado sirens save lives. With all that mother nature hath forsaken the Midwest i am pretty sure it is better safe than sorry.

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The National Weather Service is pretty much on its toes here in Tulsa. It doesn't sound the horns unless there is a threat of imminent danger. In addition, the sirens are areal, meaning only the ones closest to the storm are turned on.

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Maybe I'm missing something, but I always thought the big problem was NOT ENOUGH warning time.

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We don't have tornado sirens in my area (but we do get them on rare occasions). However, we do have tsunami and lahar sirens. If you hear those, you're dead if you don't take immediate action.

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Last night there was a Tornado sighted on the West side of my town. The sirens sounded for about a minute and then stopped. Then a few minutes later they sounded again. This went on for about 15 minutes. Same storm, same threat-so why did they shut them off at all? I commented this to my supervisor today and she said the city of Urbana turns them on and off, alternately. Presumably, you're supposed to know this and not just assume everything is all clear. That's rather stupid. I'm from here and I didn't know. Had I not been watching the weather, I might have thought the threat was past. What if you're not from this area? Or if you just came up from a basement where you couldn't hear the siren before. I realize this is a slightly different scenario than the one described (over using the siren) but I just had to vent.

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I saw a show on Discovery channel the other night about the tornadoes that ripped thru Alabama last month. They made a point on the show to say the overkill of sirens during the previous 2 weeks had people thinking "Just another false alarm"

If you guys get a chance, I'm sure they will rerun the program. I don't recall the name. Great show. Lots of cell phone footage and recordings. Tastefully done.

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when I hear the sirens go off first I look out side and see what is going on then turn on the news if it isn't on already. based on what the news says and what I am seeing outside I determine weather to get under cover.

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