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How are tornado sirens activated? Huntsville-Madison County EMA answers questions

We got a look at how tornado sirens are activated in Madison County.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Tornado sirens are what you hear when danger is near, but what do emergency officials see on the other side of those sirens?

Our FOX54 Reporter, Keneisha Deas, got a look at the Huntsville-Madison County EMA. 

“When the Ida weather warning is issued, the National Weather Service issues that warning for an area known as a polygon,” said Huntsville-Madison County EMA Emergency Management Officer Scott Worsham.

"Any siren location that lies within that polygon, will sound,” said Worsham.

Worsham shows an example, simulating what a polygon could look like. 

“If the polygon includes areas to the North of the city of Huntsville, whether the sirens in the city of Huntsville will not sound. Same thing, if the warning covers city areas those out in the rural areas of the county may not sound,” he added.

“All the sites that you see here in yellow would be sounding through an actual tornado warning sound through the county,” said Worsham.

The hope is to be spared a catastrophic tornado touching down, however, if it does, officials will be ready. “The activation center will open, will activate. We’ll have people here staffing the center,” said Worsham.

There are no community storm shelters in Huntsville, but there are some within Madison County.

“Our storm shelters will typically open in Madison County if a warning or if a tornado watch is issued, so we would anticipate if we do go into a tornado watch, that the public shelters in the county would open,” he said.

If we do go into a Tornado Warning, that would be the time to go seek shelter.

For shelters in Madison County, click here.

Shelters in North Alabama: Severe weather: North Alabama emergency storm shelters | rocketcitynow.com