Gary residents want tornado sirens

August 7, 2008 3:56:33 PM PDT
Severe weather blew through northwest Indiana this week, but unlike other towns, the people Of Gary, Indiana, received no warning of the storms. The city does not have a system of sirens to alert people about emergencies.Not every municipality has tornado sirens. It's an expense that each town has to consider. With a tornado touch down in a neighboring town, some in Gary hope their city will consider its options when it comes to an early warning system.

In the days after Monday night's storm, some residents are looking for Gary to step up its emergency alert system.

"We were watching outside. It was getting real dark and real calm and all of a sudden the wind started blowing real hard. We start listening for a tornado siren...none went off in Gary," said Steve Tucker, resident.

Tucker says in his six years in Gary he has never heard a tornado siren.

"I would like to see them fix the sirens, because this here was a close call. Nobody got hurt. But it could have been hundreds of lives lost. And that could be prevented by sirens," Tucker said.

"I would tell them, please fix them. Please update them. Do what you need to do to make sure they're in working order," said Betty Smith, resident.

On Monday night, a tornado touched down in nearby Griffith, Indiana. Griffith is among 10 Lake County towns with sirens.

East Chicago and Schererville are in the process of getting the sirens, according to Lake County Emergency Management.

"Each individual city and town in Lake County probably are doing the best that they can in regard to acquiring these sorts of equipment," said Jodi Richmond, Lake County Homeland Security interim director.

ABC7 placed several calls to Gary's mayor Thursday but was told he was not available until late afternoon. His press officer said she would forward our questions.


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