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Statewide Test for Tornado Awareness Will Sound Sirens

Test will ensure sirens are functioning, and Muskego will sound theirs between 1 and 2 p.m.

It bears repeating, because even though the announcements have been made about this week, police invariably get calls when people hear the siren go off.

Capt. John La Tour with Muskego Police confirmed that the city's sirens will also join others throughout the state as part of a drill.

"The state weather service has requested a test on Thursday between 1 and 2," he said, adding, "I'm going to have our school resource officers inform all school staff ahead of time so no one gets falsely alarmed over the siren activation. It also gives school staff the opportunity to use it as a teaching moment."

After the drill, Saturdays will also feature tests of the sirens, but early concerns over possible severe weather had officials checking the equipment sooner in the year than normal.

"Because of the unusual weather patterns that we have been experiencing so far this year, about two weeks ago we actually went out and performed a manual test on each of the 11 sirens," La Tour explained. "Two of the sirens were found to be malfunctioning, which we addressed immediately. So I am confident we are in good shape for the season. I am going to be re-programming the sirens, they are still going to test every Saturday at noon but I am not sure about the duration of the test. I’m leaning towards a little bit longer tests at least for the early part of spring."

Wisconsin tornado facts:

  • Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes annually.
  • In 2011, 38 tornadoes in Wisconsin were confirmed by the National Weather Service, the 4th highest number on record. The earliest outbreak occurred on April 10. On August 19, a man was killed when a tornado with winds of 105 mph struck Marinette County. Five others were injured in 2011.
  • In 2010, 46 tornadoes in Wisconsin were confirmed by the National Weather Services, the second greatest yearly number on record. Fortunately, no one was killed but 22 were injured and the tornadoes caused nearly $30 million in property damage.
  • The peak tornado season in Wisconsin is April to August, but tornadoes can occur any time of year, like the January 7, 2008 storms near Kenosha.

Other resources:

Ready Wisconsin website

2012 Severe Weather Awareness Kit

Denise Konkol (Editor) April 19, 2012 at 10:33 PM
Curious to know if you were in the city at 1:45 p.m. and if you heard the siren.

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