Averting disaster: Erie County officials prepare in calm before the storm

(UPDATED WITH VIDEO) Bob Heim detected the devastating sound blaring through Huron just before 10 a.m. Wednesday.
Andy Ouriel
Mar 29, 2012

(UPDATED WITH VIDEO) Bob Heim detected the devastating sound blaring through Huron just before 10 a.m. Wednesday.

Simultaneously, a screeching siren surpassed all other sounds in neighborhoods in Sandusky, Vermilion, Perkins Township and other populated areas.

One by one, almost every tornado siren situated throughout Erie County was activated in preparation for a possible doomsday scenario.

About 30 amateur radio operators located near these 44 sirens radioed in their findings and locations to Heim, who recorded the discoveries and dispatched commands from a central hub beneath the sheriff’s office on Columbus Avenue.

Luckily for community residents, the operators only noticed blue skies, mild winds and warm temperatures.

Operators and area emergency management leaders participated in a state-wide drill to test sirens during a weather awareness period.

Sirens trigger when the National Weather Service issues a tornado warning for the area. County leaders also sound off all tornado sirens at 12 p.m. during the first day of each month for routine tests.

For tips on how to spot bad weather and what items your family should have on-hand before disaster strikes, pick up a copy of Thursday's Register.

 

Want to volunteer?
What: Erie County Emergency Management Agency is seeking volunteers to become storm trackers, who relay information to dispatchers. The volunteers conduct a monthly meeting.
When: 7 p.m. every Thursday
Where: Sandusky Radio Club, 2909 W. Perkins Ave.
Also, the Firelands Amateur Repeater Association, which provides similar services to the county, is also looking for volunteers.
When: 7 p.m. every fourth Tuesday of the month
Where: Erie County Services Center, 2900 Columbus Ave.
For more information call 419-627-7617.

Comments

Sitting In The ...

Great article thanks for giving the public this information. 

suspicion247

Any one know why Norwalk, in Huron County did NOT sound their sirens?  The Norwalk Reflector is silent.  Maybe they didn't work.  Or maybe the city was lax in preparing us for the season.

Sitting In The ...

Norwalk set off their sirens I could hear a couple of them from my house for a couple minutes.

suspicion247

Thanks Sitting...  I could not hear the ones that usually go off here.  Maybe those were the only ones that didn't go off.  Glad ot know weren't just not paying attention.

wiredmama222

there is actually a "tornado" room that you can put in the basement for protection.  I saw it on the Extreme Home Makeover"  It is incredible.  

stormyschnee1991

I think its funny how they put this article Its Ohio Severe Weather Awereness week thats why the sirens was going off People are to treat this as if it was real glad I knew...

stormyschnee1991

I think its funny how they put this article Its Ohio Severe Weather Awereness week thats why the sirens was going off People are to treat this as if it was real glad I knew...

samiam

It would help if you could hear the sirens when you are in your house. 

big_d

 Thank you,  Amateur radio operators, The hams in this country have contributed their time and equipment in the public service since the beginning of radio. Before the internet and cell phones existed, they were instrumental in relaying messages around the world to men and women in the armed forces, among other things.

/ The More You Know /

judgejudy

 I live near the OVH and I cannot hear the sirens if my windows are closed. Wonder how many others in this area can't hear them. I have told officials about this, but nothing has ever been done. Guess they were too busy screwing up the intersection of Schiller & Columbus Ave.