The FCEM&HS Warning Program coordinates the Franklin County Outdoor Warning Siren System. This system consists of 195 outdoor warning sirens which reach hundreds of thousands of citizens in an emergency within seconds of activation. When activated, the outdoor warning sirens alert residents with tones or a spoken message which can be transmitted for other types of emergencies if needed. The Franklin County Outdoor Warning Siren System is one of the largest in Ohio and the United States.
The Franklin County Outdoor Warning Siren System can be activated at three different activation points throughout the county. FCEM&HS serves as the primary activation point and activates the outdoor warning sirens when a Tornado Warning is issued for Franklin County by the National Weather Service (NWS). Once activated the outdoor warning sirens will sound with a tone for 3 minutes followed by 7 minutes of silence, this sequence will continue until the warning in canceled. The siren system does not deliver an all clear signal once the warning has expired. The primary function of the siren system is to warn residents who are outside to seek shelter and monitor local media outlets or a NOAA weather radio for rapid weather changes.
Beyond notification, the FCEM&HS Warning Program is charged with testing, scheduling siren maintenance, upgrading of antiquated parts, complying with FCC mandates, policy planning for addition of sirens within the network and ensuring the siren network operates effectively.
Other components of the FCEM&HS Warning Program include the Siren Watch Program, ClearChannel Outdoor Electronic Billboards, Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS), NOAA Weather Alert Radios, FCEM&HS Community Emergency Notification, and various Smartphone Emergency Notification Systems.