Concerns Arise as Lubbock Enters Another Severe Weather Season Without Tornado Sirens

Published 04/04 2014 06:28PM

Updated 04/04 2014 06:52PM

LUBBOCK, TX -- With severe weather upon us, many residents are concerned about their safety as the city enters another season without tornado sirens. 

"I think it's an important issue," said resident Gary Staley.  "During the time tornadoes are out, we need to know it."

The Lubbock City Council has yet to make a decision on last year's proposal to purchase the sirens.
They're currently waiting for more information from their advisory committee and task force who are researching different price points. 

Mayor Glen Robertson said it could cost the city anywhere from $3-$6 million depending on how many they purchase.

"We have the potential in Lubbock for the need of a few sirens, but not 80 to 100 like some folks are proposing," said Robertson. 

Robertson understands the importance of alert systems; he wasn't far from Lubbock when an F5 tornado ripped through downtown leaving behind a path of death and destruction.  However, he thinks there are better ways to spend tax dollars than installing 1950's technology at every corner.

"We had tornado sirens in 1970 when the tornado hit Lubbock," he said.  "They didn't work.  You can throw a lot of money at a potential problems and not save any lives."

Still, though, Staley considers sirens a necessary comfort.

"We need to know when to take shelter," he said. 

According to Robertson, it won't be until 2015 until the council has a better sense of the direction they want to go in regards to purchasing sirens.  If they do decide to move forward they will go to the public with a bond package to give voters a choice. 

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