‘We did it for real;’ Some counties refuse statewide siren test following last weeks tornados

Today not all of our communities tested their tornado sirens as a part of Emergency Management’s state-wide plan, specifically, some areas where twisters hit last week said no.

Sirens across Montgomery County were ringing out in unison as part of Ohio’s yearly emergency notification statewide drill.

Harrison Township Fire Chief Mike Crist knows how important these warnings can be. He and his fellow firefighters responded to the devastation from the Memorial Day Tornado that tore through the region in 2019. Crist says without question, the notifications saved lives.

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“Going back to ours because of that early recognition and because of the early awareness that the community was able to receive, we were able to go through without any kind of significant injuries or fatalities because of that,” Crist said.

While the statewide test was planned as part of Ohio’s severe weather awareness week, some counties like Miami opted out of the drill out of respect for those affected by Last week’s tornado in Bradford.

“The intent this week of that drill is to have everyone be prepared to practice. We did it for real. So the training effect of the practice we weren’t feeling like we were gonna getting anything out,” Miami County Emergency Management Agency Director Joel Smith said.

While Miami County Emergency Management opted out of the drill, the testing will resume in April when it performs its usual test on the second Wednesday of every month at 10 a.m.