[ The Real McCoy Online Home ]                                                                                                                       April 10, 2009

McCoy to participate in statewide 
mock tornado drill April 23

Fort McCoy will participate in the Wisconsin Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week mock tornado drill from 1-2 p.m. Thursday, April 23. The week is being observed throughout Wisconsin from April 20-24.

Joseph Clemens of the Fort McCoy Directorate of Emergency Services (DES) Communications said DES will activate the Tornado Warning Siren from approximately 1:30-1:35 p.m. as part of this drill.

That is the time the La Crosse Weather Service Office is scheduled to issue its mock tornado warnings.

Tornado warning siren tones

The Fort McCoy tornado warning siren sounds a steady three-minute tone at the onset of a weather warning.

After the warning expires or an all-clear signal is issued, a 16-second wailing tone will be sounded and will be followed by an eight-second wailing tone burst.

Signals may be repeated as necessary. Personnel at the Directorate of Emergency Services will activate the sirens for the test and also would activate the sirens in case of an actual weather emergency.

The siren system will be activated for the following events:

     1)  Sighting of a funnel cloud or tornado
     2)  Tornado warning issued by the National Weather Service
     3)  Hurricane force winds
     4)  Other disasters that would require personnel to take immediate shelter (chemical spill, gas leak, etc.)

Personnel on the installation won’t be required to do anything at that time. All personnel who work at Fort McCoy are encouraged to become familiar with their building’s severe weather plans.

Anyone who is not aware of their building’s plan is encouraged to contact his or her supervisor or the building fire marshal.

According to the state of Wisconsin Emergency Management Team, the mock tornado drill will be broadcast over NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) weather radio as part of its weekly test.

The drill will be canceled if severe weather exists anywhere in the state April 23 and rescheduled for Friday, April 24 with the same time schedule.

If there is severe weather April 24, as well, the drill will be canceled.

Anyone on Fort McCoy who can’t hear the tornado siren warnings or wants more information about the drill can call Clemens at 608-388-7093.

The installation holds a weekly tornado warning siren testing at noon Wednesdays, unless there are storms in the area. The external, "outside," notification system is designed to alert individuals that are outside to seek shelter. Personnel may or may not hear the warning alert indoors.


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