By Jamie Rieger
People in Bow Island may have heard a warning siren at about 10:30 on Friday morning, but the warning was just a test.
The siren, which was previously located on the Town office building, had been moved to the water tower and activated as just one way municipal officials can send out a warning to residents should a major emergency take place.
“This is the old town siren that we put up here last year. It will be used to warn people of severe storms, such as tornadoes and plough winds,” said mayor, Gordon Reynolds. “When people hear this siren, they will know they need to take shelter.”
Reynolds added that the Town stopped using the siren at the Town office when members of the Bow Island fire department started being equipped with radios. Prior to that, the siren would alert volunteer firefighters of emergencies in progress.
The test on Friday morning was to ensure the siren would work sufficiently in the case of an emergency.
During the test, public works staff were positioned at various locations throughout town; NAPA, the recycling centre, School Crescent, Westview Crescent, ball park, and the Town office. Some staff members reported that they could hear the siren fine, others said they could faintly hear it.
Also, some people who were aware of the warning and situated inside building could barely hear it; others did not hear it at all.
The siren gives the Town one more tool to utilize should they need to get the message out to the entire community about a severe emergency situation.
“We hope we never have to use it, but if you hear it, take shelter in your basement or bathtub,” said Reynolds, adding that the Town will be testing the siren on a regular basis to ensure it’s functionality.