|Updated: 2/15 4:35 pm
||Published: 2/15 4:34 pm
GOSNELL, AR - The tornado sirens in a small town in northeast Arkansas will have to be turned on manually for the next 5 to 6 weeks.
The police department in Gosnell just changed their radio system, which is what they use to activate the sirens. However, the radios on the towers have not been similarly upgraded. That mean, during an emergency, an officer has to manually start the sirens during severe weather.
“What we do is we have a portable radio that we go and we stand underneath the tower and we turn it on,” says Chief Darrell Watkins, the the Gosnell Police Department. “That one works and it sends out the message to the other ones and all of them work.”
Residents are worried about the process during an emergency. “You manually got to come and cut them on? What if he gets caught up in and he can't cut it on. We're screwed,” says Antonio Banks.
Chief Watkins say they have ordered the part need to fix one of the towers, but it will be about 5 to 6 weeks before it is installed. Then they will have to test it to see if it works.
“That needs to be one of their top priorities.People's safety down here,” says Banks.