MADISON – In light of the flooding of June 2016 the Mayor of the City of Madison H.H. “Sonny” Howell Jr. wants to ensure his city and surrounding areas are safe and prepared if a natural disaster should occur.
Therefore, Howell wanted to replace the sirens that were used for the fire department and for curfew to help warn the city if a disaster occurs.
According to Steve Byus the Emergency Management Coordinator for the City of Madison the cost for a brand new warning system is approximately $80,000 for each siren for a total of $160,000.
The City of Madison has two sirens.
According to Byus Kanawha County was replacing their sirens with new ones; however the old sirens were compatible with Madison’s emergency sirens and were still operational.
Communications Services from Chesapeake, W.Va donated the old sirens to the City of Madison when they took them down in Kanawha County and charged the City of Madison an installation fee of $10,000 to install both sirens.
This is a savings of $150,000 for the City of Madison.
According to Howell the locations of these sirens are the middle of Madison and on Price Hill.
Howell said, “The sirens will only be activated in an emergency but used especially for weather warnings and other natural, technological and disaster information.”
“A solid three minute blast will indicate you need to tune into your emergency broadcast radio,” said Howell. “Also, this will indicate one to move to higher ground or shelter in place.”
Byus said, “The siren will be tested on the last Wednesday of every month at noon.”
“In most cases most people will not even hear the test,” said Howell. “This is an outdoor warning system only.”
Heather Kinder is a reporter for the Coal Valley News. She can be contacted at 304-307-3104, [email protected] or on Twitter @CVN_hkinder.