Did Adairsville's Tornado Sirens Sound?

A transcript of a 911 call indicates at least one north Bartow County resident wanted to know why she didn't hear warning sirens minutes before the EF-3 ripped through, killing one.

Did Bartow County's tornado sirens sound Jan. 30 in Adairsville before an EF-3 tornado ravaged the area, killing one, injuring several others and damaging hundreds of buildings?

Some locals say the answer is no.

Adairsville resident Elaine Cooke told Cartersville Patch on Jan. 31 that she didn't hear tornado warning sirens at her home at Cass Street and MLK Drive. Cooke said a huge tree in her yard crushed her friend's car within 30 seconds of the women getting out of the vehicle.

Other residents called 911 minutes before the twister hit to say the tornado sirens were not working, WSB-TV reports. One of the 911 callers asked why the sirens in Adairsville had not sounded, according to a transcript published by WSB.

Ashley White, who lives within feet of a tornado siren, told the station she was outside playing with her children and the sirens near her home did not sound.

In January, Bartow County Fire Department Chief and Emergency Management Agency Director Craig Millsap told Cartersville Patch that officials had received reports of residents not hearing the tornado sirens, but they sounded in Adairsville.

Millsap added Adairsville's tornado sirens could be heard sounding on TV news video of the tornado passing over downtown Adairsville.

A maintenance worker Thursday checked Adairsville's tornado sirens, which he said passed all the tests and seemed to functioning properly, according to WSB. 

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Shirley Ledford April 04, 2013 at 07:28 PM
I live about 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile from where the tornado hit in Adairsville on JFH Pkwy. Day of the tornado I heard the first tornado siren sound before the tornado hit and I called my granddaughter next door and told her to take cover. She heard the sirens and said she talked to me later. After sirens stopped for a few minutes they sounded again. I called my granddaughter again they were going off again.. I don't know why people did not hear the sirens because they did sound twice. Shirley Ledford
Teresa Colern April 08, 2013 at 01:46 PM
People should not rely on sirens to warn them. They are there as an added safety feature, but technologies do fail. If you watch the news you would be aware of the possibility of severe weather on any given day. Having weather radios, warnings sent to your phone (if available), watching you tv, turning on your radio, are more reliable venues to ensure your families safety.


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