NEWARK – The Licking County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) in cooperation with Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES) will perform their annual tornado siren drill on Tuesday, February 25 and Wednesday, February 26 throughout Licking County. The intent of the drill is to verify that all tornado sirens in Licking County are operational and properly oriented prior to the beginning of severe weather season in Central Ohio.
Testing is scheduled to begin at 9 am and may continue at various locations throughout Licking County until 4 pm. In the event of inclement weather on February 25 and/or February 26, the tornado siren drills will be rescheduled.
There are 57 tornado siren locations in Licking County. The results of the siren testing will be shared with each of the local jurisdictions so they are able to make any required repairs prior to Severe Weather Awareness week, March 22-28, 2020.
The tornado siren testing will be monitored and recorded by ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Service) and EMA team members – most operating in the field and some team members running operations from Licking County Regional Communications Center (LCRCC).
Information obtained during the siren testing will be reported to the Licking County Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and LCRCC for mapping updates, as well the Licking County EMA. A final report will be developed based on the drill results and will be provided to each jurisdiction.
Please note that effective Wednesday, March 4 at Noon, EMA will be transitioning to weekly testing of tornado sirens year-round. If the 911 Center is busy due to an emergency, the test can be delayed up to 30 minutes but never past 12:30 pm. Tests will not occur on days with thunderstorms in the area to minimize confusion. Information regarding tornado testing will be posted on the EMA website at www.lickingcounty.gov/depts/ema.
Please remember, the tornado siren testing on February 25 and 26 is only a drill.