The National Weather Service Valley, NE Office and the Montgomery and Pottawattamie County Emergency Management Agencies will conduct their annual Severe Weather Awareness week to promote Severe Weather Safety to citizens of both counties during the week of March 19th –to the 23rd, 2012. The Annual TORNADO DRILL DAY will be Wednesday, March 21st. (In the event of severe weather, the drill will be postponed to Thursday, March 22nd). The drill will begin at 10-am with the outdoor warning sirens activated at approximately 10:10-am. 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 Tornado Drill will only be conducted for the Omaha/Valley Weather Service Warning Area which includes SW Iowa Counties of Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Monona, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie, and Shelby Counties. The Des Moines Weather Service will hold their annual Severe Weather Awareness week April 2-6, 2012, with the annual Tornado drill on April 4th.
On the day of the drill, the Montgomery County Communications Center will activate all outdoor warning sirens for the cities of Red Oak, Stanton, Villisca, Elliott and Grant, along with the indoor warning system for participating agencies. Residences in these communities are encouraged to contact your local City Hall or local Fire Departments should their sirens not properly sound during the drill.
The Pott 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. Both Emergency Management Agencies remind 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 communities in the County 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. Residents can sign up for the service, free of charge at www.pottcounty.com.