While many are preparing for winter, one central Ohio county is already gearing up for the next severe weather season.
Fourteen new tornado sirens will be placed throughout the City of Columbus and Franklin County.
Franklin County Emergency Management Director Mike Pannell said that the new sirens will be installed next spring.
The sirens will be installed in areas where the county’s 181 sirens do not reach.
“People are conditioned for it over decades and decades, so we’re big siren fans here,” Pannell said. “The goal would be to fill all the gaps.”
An example of a gap is near Huber Ridge, a few minutes to the east of Eason Town Center.
“We do hear the sirens, but it’s very, very faint,” said Gahanna resident Melissa Hershner.
Hershner said that her family has lived in the neighborhood for nearly 12 years and a decade of not being able to hear the sirens has left her uneasy.
“It doesn’t wake me up at night,” Hershner said.
Hershner lives in one of the areas set to get a new siren.
Emergency management officials said that they consider several factors when choosing a location, such as nearby stadiums, population, parks and schools.
Hershner said that she is looking forward to feeling safer.
“I think it’s wonderful,” Hershner said. “I will feel a lot more at ease.”
The Franklin County EMA and Homeland Security received a grant to purchase eight of the 14 new sirens. The City of Columbus will purchase the other six.
The following sites will receive new sirens:
Sawmill Rd. & Cranston Dr.
E. Livingston Ave. & Dellwood Ave.
E. Broad St. & Cardinal Park Dr.
Leonard Ave. & Brentnell Ave.
4992 Lindora Dr.
E. Broad St. & Broad Pointe Pl.
Cleveland Ave. & Bretton Woods Dr.
N. High St. & High Bluffs Blvd.
W. North Broadway St. & Clearview Ave.
Olentangy River Rd. & Wakeford St.
4595 Wyandotte Dr.
645 Marion Rd.
Roberts Rd. & Brookford Dr.
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