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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

April 1, 2013

City of Maryville aligning warning siren tests with state agency

Helpful severe weather tips: 

  • A tornado watch means watch the sky. A tornado may form during a thunderstorm.
  • A tornado warning means seek shelter immediately.
  • An interior room without windows on the lowest floor is the safest shelter location.
  • Do not seek shelter in a cafeteria, gymnasium or other large open room because the roof might collapse. 
  • Immediately leave a mobile home to seek shelter in a nearby building. 
  • Overpasses are not safe. An overpass’ under-the-girder-type construction can cause a dangerous wind tunnel effect.
  • If you are driving, you should stop and take shelter in a nearby building.
  • If you are driving in a rural area, seek shelter in a roadside ditch. Protect yourself from flying debris by covering your head with your arms, a coat or a blanket. Be prepared to move quickly in case the ditch fills with water
  • Never drive into standing water. It can take less than six inches of fast moving water to make a slow moving car float.  Once floating, a vehicle can overturn and sink.  

Along with Maryville Public Safety and in accordance with the Missouri State Highway Patrol Region H test schedule, Northwest Missouri State University is changing the test times for its local network of outdoor warning sirens.

Beginning Wednesday, April 3, Northwest and the city will test its warning sirens at 11 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month. The new time also coincides with a weekly NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio test.

Six sirens, which double as public address systems, are located throughout the city of Maryville, including one on the Northwest campus. A seventh siren is located at Mozingo Lake Recreation Park.

On subsequent Wednesdays, emergency officials will conduct a local outdoor warning system test that includes the ringing of church bells.

“Essentially, we are trying to satisfy both local requirements and participate in the same tests as Troop H (of the highway patrol),” Maryville Public Safety Director Keith Wood said. “The goal is to standardize the testing practice.”

In the event of severe weather, the sirens are activated when the National Weather Service, local spotters or law enforcement officers report a tornado or other storm poses an immediate threat.

If the storm system produces a tornado or has the potential to do so within two or three miles of Maryville, the sirens will be activated.

Wood said the decision to change the times of the tests was made locally, and the standardization should benefit residents locally and regionally.

Additionally, Maryville Public Safety invites local residents to sign up for its Textcaster Alert System, which allows law enforcement to send text messages containing updates about severe weather, criminal activity or other emergency responses. Signup is free and accessible at

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468