Dane County looks to upgrade outdoor emergency sirens

MADISON, Wis. — When a tornado touches down, odds are you’ll hear an emergency siren before you see the twister. But Dane County officials say their sirens are outdated.

The county is home to 141 outdoor warning sirens, 79 of which are owned by the county. Officials said Monday that the system is almost a decade old and hasn’t kept up with changing technology.

“As our county grows, it’s important we utilize the most current technology available when it comes to keeping our communities safe,” County Executive Joe Parisi said in a statement.

Parisi included $3 million in his 2023 budget intended to upgrade the sirens. Under Parisi’s proposal, the sirens would be programmed to sound automatically when National Weather Service forecasters issue a tornado warning

The 2023 budget was put in front of the County Board earlier this month and is expected to be voted on in early November.

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