LUBBOCK Texas – The Lubbock City Council voted on Tuesday to install 45 tornado sirens on utility poles around the city.
Joe Moudy, director of Emergency Management for the City of Lubbock, said the project was presented as an idea in 2014 when a citizens advisory committee recommended the city install outdoor warning systems.
The city had a budget of $1.1 million for the project and had six proposals from various companies to choose between. Goddard Enterprises of Oklahoma was selected for the project at $710,415.40.
“It’s important to have multiple ways to inform people of impending danger or risk to their health,” said Moudy, In this situation cell phones can fail, NOAA radios can fail, It’s good to have an additional tool in the toolbox.”
Logan Shelts, operations manager at Goddard Enterprises, said the city will be utilizing the CommanderOne, a cloud based platform, which will enable the city to trigger the sirens from a mobile app on their phone and a web browser from anywhere in the world. Shelts also said the system is also automatic.
Shelts said the system will be able to interpret information directly from the National Weather Service and send alerts without user interaction required.
“What that means is you don’t have to wait for someone to push the button which can, a lot of times, extend the warning period by a lot,” he said.
Shelts also said the sirens can be heard about a mile away.
“I compare [the sound] to an airplane engine, maybe a very large rock concert if you’re up close to it,” said Shelts.
Moudy said the project is planned to take around 120 days to complete and that residents should still invest in things to help alert them for emergency situations.
“We want them to have as many notification systems, as they can, whether that’s NOAA Weather radios, LBK alert, news, weather apps that send those alerts,” said Moudy. “We want them to be safe.”