News, Weather

March 15th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Pottawattamie County Emergency Management Agency, National Weather Service and other preparedness partners will conduct a Severe Weather Awareness Week to promote severe weather safety to citizens the week of March 19-23, 2012. The National Weather Service will promote weather safety by issuing informative daily Public Information Statements. Citizens can also get this information by following the Pottawattamie County Emergency Management Agency on Facebook. Topics will include: Severe Weather Terminology, Severe Thunderstorms, Tornadoes, Tornado Drill, Lightning, Flooding and Social Media.

The annual TORNADO DRILL DAY will be Wednesday, March 21st. (In case of severe weather, the drill will be postponed to Thursday March 22nd) The drill sequence will begin at 10a.m. with sirens sounding at approximately 10:10a.m. The test warning will be valid for 20 minutes. All citizens, businesses, schools, healthcare facilities and public facilities are encouraged to participate in this drill by practicing what you would do in a real tornado warning.

The County 911 Center will activate outdoor warning sirens for the communities of Avoca, Carson, Carter Lake, Council Bluffs, Crescent, Macedonia, McClelland, Neola, Oakland and Underwood. Citizens in other Pottawattamie County communities are encouraged to contact their City Hall or local Fire Department to see if sirens will sound during the drill.

The Emergency Management Agency would like to remind all citizens that outdoor warning sirens have limited to no effectiveness when you are in your home or traveling in your vehicle. Pottawattamie County residents and residents of our communities are strongly encouraged to sign up for the Code Red Emergency Notification System. The service is free of charge and you will receive a phone call (home and/or cell) when severe weather threatens.

This is a very important, potentially life-saving tool, especially where there are no sirens or you are in a place where sirens would be ineffective in warning you and your family. Residents should sign up for the service, free of charge at