Siren Activation Protocol
In addition to warning siren testing, there are three initiating actions that result in the warning sirens being activated in Athens County.
When to activate:
1) Severe Weather
a) When the National Weather Service initiates a Tornado Warning for any portion of Athens County.
b) When the National Weather Service initiates a Severe Thunderstorm Warning (winds 58+ mph, large hail, severe lightening and heavy rains).
c) When a public safety official or trained storm-spotter states that they are in sight of an active funnel cloud, tornado or severe thunderstorm (winds 58+ mph, large hail, severe lightening and heavy rains) within Athens County.
d) When Athens County 9-1-1 receives credible reports of damage or the imminent threat of sustained winds equal to or greater than 58 mph.
2) When there is an enemy or terrorist attack. This means that an actual enemy or terrorist attack against the United States has been detected and is threatening a local jurisdiction and protective action should be taken immediately. The attack warning shall be repeated as often as deemed necessary by local government authorities to obtain the required response by the population.
3) When a public safety emergency occurs. The public safety emergency warning may be used as authorized by the local incident commander to alert the public of emergencies such as hazardous materials incidents and civil disturbances. The alert warning shall be repeated as often as deemed necessary by the local incident commander to obtain the required response by the population.
Based on the above criteria, an activation of the warning sirens will also take place when severe weather presents an increased threat from its prior status that could result in loss of life or cause serious personal injury. Examples of this are as follows:
1) If a Tornado Warning is issued for Athens County, the warning sirens will be activated. If during the warning period an active funnel cloud / tornado is sighted by a public safety official or trained storm-spotter, the warning sirens shall be activated once again.
2) During night-time conditions or in the absence of adequate warning, the on-duty 9-1-1 supervisor can direct an activation of the outdoor warning sirens if they determine that lives may be saved and injuries averted by alerting the public to the severe weather condition.