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Errant sirens leave city howling

Staff writer

A tornado siren sounded for 15 minutes Tuesday morning in Marion. Although it confused residents, there was no danger.

“They’re malfunctioning,” city administrator Brogan Jones said of the siren, which went off until 10:22 a.m. “Crews are out trying to figure it out.”

The city posted about the problem on social media, but many people said it should have notified residents via Code Red, an emergency alert system it uses to call and text residents who have signed up for it.

“We apologize for not being able to send out a Code Red or post to Facebook quicker, but the phones were ringing non-stop, and we definitely didn’t want to ignore them,” a city post read. “Sorry for the inconvenience.”

“Maybe posting that it was a malfunction would have stopped the calls,” a post from an account in the name of Kath McGee Young read. “Work smarter not harder.”

“Would it be possible to send information like this out via Code Red?” a post from an account in the name of Kelsey Metro read. “It may be easier for citizens to be aware of what is going on instead of relying on Facebook.”

An account in the name of Darren Frazier responded to Metro, writing, “Yes, my opinion (former emergency manager), especially Code Red having a larger reach, especially the elderly.”

Jones said the city would have liked to have used Code Red to make calls and send out texts but couldn’t because of time constraints.

The siren on the north hill malfunctioned because of wind, Jones said.

“It’s resolved,” he said Tuesday afternoon. “It shouldn’t happen again.”

Tuesday wasn’t the first time sirens malfunctioned.

Although there was no tornado, winds did pick up Tuesday morning, causing a large limb to fall on an electric line in the 400 block of Elm St.

City electric crews, police, and the sheriff’s office responded.

Crews cut the limb slowly until it was off the line.

Last modified June 29, 2023

 

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