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Douglas County Outdoor Warning System Purpose and Function

Many communities have installed outdoor warning siren systems to provide an additional warning of impending danger from threatening weather.  As their name implies, our sirens are pre-event warning devices which are manufactured and installed so that they can be heard when people are out-of-doors or outside of their homes or other buildings.  Although the outdoor warning sirens are often heard inside of buildings, they are not designed or installed to be heard inside of buildings within their geographic coverage area.

During severe weather season, you can be prepared for severe weather by simply listening to the forecast before you leave home.  It is recommended that every home, school and business be equipped with a NOAA All-Hazard Weather Radio.  When severe weather watch and warning information is not being broadcast, detailed forecast information will be provided.  You can also obtain local weather forecast information from area radio and television stations.  Detailed forecasts can also be found on the internet from a number of sites such as The National Weather Service.


If you are outside when the sirens sound, seek shelter immediately and turn on your TV or radio to a local broadcast and/or your NOAA All-Hazard Weather Radio to be informed of the emergency.  DO NOT CALL 9-1-1 TO INQUIRE ABOUT THE SIRENSSeek safe shelter inside a building, preferably in the basement or lowest level and away from glass, unanchored items or insufficiently supported objects.

  1. Turn on local media and monitor your weather radio.
  2. If tornado is imminent, crawl under a table, mattress or other item that may offer additional protection.  
  3. If at home, follow your prepared emergency plan and keep your emergency kit stocked and within reach. See for instructions for assembling an emergency kit.
  4. If at work or school, follow the established procedure and be attentive to changes in forecast information.


Douglas County's Outdoor Warning Siren System is tested during Severe Weather Awareness Week each year and then routinely tested on the 1st Wednesday of each month thereafter, 11am, from May through October.  Siren problems may be reported online.   


Printable Siren Brochure
Example Siren Announcement
The National Weather Service.


Storm Spotter training takes place each year in Douglas County.

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