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Outdoor Warning Sirens

Probably the most common and widely recognized method of warning is through the use of outdoor warning sirens.  They are used by communities for a variety of purposes:


  • Testing - 1st Tuesday of each month at 10:00 AM

  • Alerting - members of a volunteer fire department of a fire

  • Severe Weather

  • Major Hazardous Material or Chemical Spill - in the local community

During emergencies residents will hear a 3 to 5 minute steady signal of the sirens, horns or other devices.  When you hear the siren and are unsure what they are sounding for, go indoors and tune your radio to one of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) Stations, and listen for essential emergency information (see below).


DO NOT call local fire or police agencies to ask why the sirens are sounding.  If it is an emergency, they are busy getting equipment and manpower to the emergency scene.


REMEMBER, OUTDOOR WARNING SIRENS ARE JUST THAT, OUTDOOR WARNING. The sirens are meant to be heard outside to signal you to go indoors and tune your radio or television station to the local Emergency Alert System (EAS) Station.  As homes continue to become more energy efficient and sound proofing enhanced, outdoor warning sirens that once could be heard decades ago inside of a home can no longer be heard.  That’s why other means of warning are in place.


In Will County, an ALL CLEAR signal is NOT sent.  That’s why it’s important to monitor your local radio station during times of emergency for further information.  Too much confusion trying to differentiate between the signals can result from issuing an "All Clear".  No activation of sirens occur for weather watches or "All Clear".


During times of severe weather the National Weather Service issues a Severe Thunderstorm Watch or Tornado Watch for a six hour period.  The Weather Service may terminate a watch early if weather conditions change or the threat of severe weather no longer exists.  Severe Thunderstorm Warnings and Tornado Warnings are normally issued for a period of one hour.  Warnings are usually allowed to expire on their own, without an early termination from the Weather Service.


In Will County, when you hear sirens sound in your community, tune to your local Emergency Alert System (EAS) station for further information.  Primary EAS stations for Will County include: 

WJOL – 1340 AM

WCCQ – 98.3 FM

WSSR – 96.7 FM

WRXQ – 100.7 FM


If you have any questions, or would like further information on the outdoor warning sirens or any other notification systems, please contact our office.

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