Delaware County, Indiana

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Outdoor Warning Sirens and Tornado Safety

A TORNADO WATCH means conditions are favorable for severe weather.

Issued by local NWS offices to warn the public that a tornado has been sighted by storm spotters or has been indicated by radar.
These warnings are issued with information concerning where the tornado is presently located and what communities are in the anticipated path of the tornado.


Siren image

Outdoor Warning Sirens are primarily used to warn your community of severe weather conditions. The outdoor sirens are also used for other emergencies such as a hazardous chemical spill which requires residents to evacuate their homes.

Sirens are effectively used to warn people of possible threats to their safety when they are outdoors. You may not be able to hear the sirens or be in an area that is not protected by the outdoor sirens!
Sirens may be the financial responsibility of various agencies, depending on where they are located. Sirens located in small towns may be the responsibility to maintain by those communities. Most sirens are over 30 years old and it can be difficult to find replacement parts. In addition there are currently no annual budgeted funds within Delaware County government to fund any repairs or upgrades.

The outdoor warning sirens are tested weekly on Friday at 11am.  The test may be cancelled if any severe weather is anticipated to reduce any confusion of the test with actual severe weather.

When you hear a steady tone, it means that a tornado has been sighted in Delaware County or the National Weather Service has issued a tornado warning for  Delaware County.

  • Take cover immediately.
  • There is no “All Clear” signal.
  • Tune to your weather radio,  local cable TV or radio stations for information and instructions.

When OUTDOOR WARNING SIRENS are activated:

  • Do seek shelter
  • Do not call emergency services dispatch (911) to ask why the sirens are sounding!


Often times when severe weather threatens, high winds, rain and other atmospheric conditions limit the range that the sirens can be heard outdoors, and nearly impossible to hear indoors, even if close by.  If weather is severe enough, power may be out and the sirens may not function. You should have ways to receive notifications from the National Weather Service such as a Weather Alert Radio (see below) or an app for your phone that provides local severe weather alerts. Use common sense, if weather looks threatening and you see lightning or hear thunder, take shelter quickly.


NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards (NWR) is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting continuous weather information directly from the nearest National Weather Service office. NWR broadcasts official Weather Service warnings, watches, forecasts and other hazard information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Working with the Federal Communication Commission's (FCC) Emergency Alert System , NWR is an "All Hazards" radio network, making it your single source for comprehensive weather and emergency information. In conjunction with Federal, State, and Local Emergency Managers and other public officials, NWR also broadcasts warning and post-event information for all types of hazards - including natural (such as earthquakes or avalanches), environmental (such as chemical releases or oil spills), and public safety (such as AMBER alerts or 911 Telephone outages).

Known as the "Voice of NOAA's National Weather Service," NWR is provided as a public service by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), part of the Department of Commerce. NWR includes 1000 transmitters, covering all 50 states, adjacent coastal waters, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Pacific Territories. NWR requires a special radio receiver or scanner capable of picking up the signal. Broadcasts are found in the VHF public service band at these seven frequencies (MHz):

Please protect your family with a All Hazard NOAA Weather Radio! Not just a weather radio but a mass notification system to protect your family from all hazards and emergency situations.

Delaware County /Muncie transmitting frequency is 162.425 Call Sign KJY93 providing a 1000 watts alerting system. Delaware County S.A.M.E. Code: 018035


Outdoor Siren Frequently Asked Questions:

Why are they called outdoor warning sirens?
The sirens are called outdoor warning sirens because their primary purpose is to alert people who are outside to severe weather, chemical, or other emergencies. The system is not designed to provide notification inside of your home or business.

What should I do if I hear an outdoor warning siren?
If you hear an outdoor warning siren you should seek shelter inside immediately. Once inside, you should turn on a television or weather radio to learn further information. Local officials will be disseminating information about the emergency through these outlets

When should I expect to hear an outdoor warning siren?
The outdoor warning sirens are tested on the Friday of each week at 11:00 am to ensure they are working properly. If there is any type of severe weather threat in the area during the scheduled test time, the test will be cancelled - this is to prevent confusion between the test and actual severe weather.

Delaware County Outdoor Warning Siren Coverage Map

Outdoor Warning Sirens are placed in areas of dense population, areas where people congregate outdoor (sports parks, city parks, schools, etc..) They are also placed in small towns and sometimes have a dual role of alerting the volunteer fire departments to fire calls.

(coverage is estimated and depends on weather conditions, made-made and natural obstructions, some sirens shown maybe non-functional and are not currently funded for repair or replacement)


To report a Outdoor Warning Siren failure, malfunction, or safety concern please fill out the Warning Siren Complaint Form in the Action Center.