Outdoor Warning System
The system in Haltom City is a network of five outdoor warning sirens placed on poles fifty feet from the ground surface. These warning sirens are placed in strategically located areas throughout the city.
The Outdoor Warning System (OWS) is known by many as "tornado sirens" or just "sirens". However, it is important to understand that the OWS is designed for all hazards. As the name implies, the system is designed for people that are outdoors. Those indoors may be unable to hear the OWS for various reasons (radio or television is on, vacuum cleaner going, etc.). The OWS should only be used as a supplemental warning tool for individuals. OWS can be used to alert residents of tornadoes, hail, hazardous material incidents, civil emergencies, and any other impending hazard that could adversely affect the lives and property in the general vicinity.
- The National Weather Service issues a Tornado Warning or Severe Thunderstorm Warning.
- Trained spotters have reported a tornado in the jurisdiction, or in a neighboring jurisdiction that has the potential to impact Haltom City.
- Sustained winds of 70mph or greater. (Wind speeds of 45 MPH may be more appropriate for areas or events where large numbers of people are outdoors)
- Reported hail of 1.25 feet in diameter or greater. (1 inch may be more appropriate for areas or events where large numbers of people are outdoors)
- Gas or hazardous materials leaks or spills or large fires that could affect residents.
- Other emergencies as directed by the community's elected officials.
- When an Outdoor Warning System is activated, remain calm and seek shelter indoors. Then, tune into your NOAA All Hazards Radio or local television or radio for further instructions.
- Note: In this area, WBAP Radio 820 am is the designated Emergency Alert System (EAS) station. Most other radio and television stations will also broadcast information regarding emergencies.
- Take whatever action is necessary to protect yourself and your family. Stay inside unless you receive information that contradicts staying inside.
- Please do not call 911 unless you must report a life-threatening situation.
- Keep blankets, water, non-perishable food, flashlight, personal hygiene items, necessary medications, pet food and medicine, portable radio, and spare batteries readily accessible.
- Have your driver's license, checkbook, cash, and credit cards with you.
- Always keep at least a half tank of fuel in your vehicle.
- Communications plan for you and your immediate and extended families.
- If you have a cellular telephone, keep it charged and accessible for these emergencies
The outdoor warning system is tested at 1 pm on the first Wednesday of each month. The sirens will not be tested if inclement weather is forecast or is in the immediate area.
On April 1st, 2010, Mark Fox, of the National Weather Service, presented Haltom City Emergency Management with the StormReady Community Designation.
There are three steps to becoming StormReady: written application, verification visit(s), and local board action. Applicants with jurisdiction over a community and unincorporated areas of the surrounding county need only submit one application with the combined populations. The application requests a basic accounting of emergency technology and a brief narrative describing preparedness and planning activities. The narrative aids in assessing such things as the hazardous weather plan, exercises, and public safety programs.
StormReady communities are better prepared to save lives from the onslaught of severe weather through advanced planning, education, and awareness. No community is stormproof, but StormReady can help communities save lives.
This program educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area. It trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search, rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. The Haltom City CERT members are a group of volunteers trained under FEMA guidelines to assist the Fire Department, Police Department, and other City departments in emergencies and disasters. They also assist the City in various capacities at City events.