WILLMAR -- The outdoor emergency warning sirens located near Eagle's Landing and the Holiday Inn in Willmar are currently under repair, Fire Chief Marv Calvin said Wednesday. He said repairs may take up to eight weeks.
Calvin said residents in these neighborhoods should stay tuned to weather updates on TV or radio during inclement weather and should consider purchasing a weather radio for indoor use.
"We recommend people listen to local media, radio station or TV or both'' for weather information. A better option, he said, is purchase of a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather radio to be notified in the event of an emergency.
Calvin said notice about the siren repair was posted on the Fire Department's web page.
"It's important to make the public aware when we do have a problem,'' he said.
He reminds the public that outdoor warning sirens are not intended to notify people in their homes.
"What we want is that when the sirens sound if you're outside, it's telling you to get inside and take cover,'' he said.
The siren located near Eagle's Landing was relocated a few years ago. Calvin thinks the problem may be a manufacturer's defect or component failure. He said an attempt will be made to do the repairs in-house if possible.
He said delivery of parts will take up to eight weeks, and then the parts will need to be installed.
"That's almost through the end of our storm season, which is a concern to us,'' he said.
The siren at the Holiday Inn was struck by lightning sometime between June 6 and 17.
"That will be a pretty expensive repair,'' said Calvin.
Calvin said Pete's Communication in Willmar handles maintenance and repairs.
"The city of Willmar is very well-protected,'' he said.
Calvin said all sirens have battery backups in the event of a power failure. He said all batteries have been systemically upgraded.
"In the event that there's a power failure, our sirens in Willmar will still sound. That's not consistent all across the state. But here in Willmar, we've got a very good siren system,'' said Calvin.