The Harford County Department of Emergency Services, in conjunction with Exelon Power, is notifying residents near the Peach Bottom nuclear power facility of upcoming testing of a new siren system on Tuesday.
Testing of the new siren system will involve multiple full volume three-minute soundings which will commence at 8 a.m. and will occur every 1.5 hours for up to five soundings throughout the day. A sixth test of the system will occur in the event additional data is needed.
The siren tests are not a signal to evacuate. It should be noted that the sirens are an outdoor waning system but may be heard indoors. In an actual emergency, residents should tune to the Emergency Alert System radio or television stations for further information.
The warning sirens are one of several methods used by county emergency management agencies to provide citizens with notification of emergencies. Individual counties may activate the sirens to warn the surrounding community of any emergency conditions.
The testing is being conducted in accordance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requirements for new siren systems.
Exelon has installed a new state-of-the art siren system within Peach Bottom’s 10-mile Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ). The 97 new outdoor warning sirens incorporate a battery powered backup system and an upgraded communication system that enable full functionality in the event of an electrical power outage.
“We do not want to cause unnecessary alarm to our citizens,” Harford County Emergency Manager Richard Ayers said in a news release. “However the testing of the siren system is necessary and is being done in the interest of public safety.”