COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - When severe weather strikes our area, we can count on the 47 emergency sirens scattered throughout Muscogee County to alert us to real danger.
And it's not just tornadoes that justify the wails of the sirens. When heavy rain and lightning hit us a few days ago, the sirens sounded an alarm.
But because most people associate the sirens with a tornado warning, some of our Facebook friends wondered why the sirens were used if there was no tornado spotted.
Our Chief Meteorologist Derek Kinkade explained on social media and on the air that the sirens are also used to warn of severe thunderstorms and the dangers that torrential rains and high winds can cause.
We are fortunate to have the siren system in place. A long two minute alert is sounded for tornadoes.
The severe thunderstorm siren is more of a wailing sound, and is activated when wind gusts reach 55 miles per hour.
Derek's explanation was another method of communicating with our viewers and followers on Facebook and Twitter.
Many of you have downloaded our free severe weather smartphone app, with real time storm tracking is one of the best ways to stay informed especially when the power goes out.
The siren system and our weather app are both powerful tools to keep you ahead of the storm.
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