A new weather siren was officially dedicated and tested last Friday morning in Martinsburg, just one day after a severe weather system came through the area. The city had been without an outdoor warning siren for at least five years.
Chris Newbrough, an Audrain County Grant Coordinator who works with the Audrain County Emergency Management Agency, addressed a crowd of spectators attending a press conference where the siren was installed near the town’s water tower.
He said the siren was installed on March 30 and was the culmination of six months in fundraising efforts by the Audrain County Emergency Management Agency.
Funds for the near $10,000 project came from donations and $1,000 given by the city. Newbrough listed the donors during the conference.
“I just want to thank all of the folks who worked so hard on this,” said Audrain County Presiding Commissioner Steve Hobbs.
The Whelan siren sits on a longer than 50-foot pole. It has a broadcast radius of 2,400 feet in any direction or just under a half mile when at full volume. It is rated at 110 decibels at 100-feet.
The siren can be activated without warning from the National Weather Service or if trained spotters and other law enforcement officials see a tornado.
It’s the newest siren in Audrain County. In recent months, Benton City had a siren erected.
Some of the dignitaries attending the event included Rep. Jay Houghton, Presiding Commissioner Steve Hobbs, Western Commissioner Tom Groves, City of Martinsburg officials, among others.
There are current plans to potentially erect a siren at Community R-VI Schools in Laddonia.