Although all tornado warning sirens have been installed in Monticello and in Drew County, the sirens, according to Monticello Mayor Zack Tucker, are not yet operational pending a final inspection.

The sirens should be ready for use in the next several weeks. It is expected that a protocol for their employment will be announced by the city or county when they go online. Drew County citizens can receive text or telephone alerts in the case of severe weather by signing up for the Code Red Service.

The simplest, most effective, and least expensive (many models cost less than $25) remedy to lower the fatality rate of tornadoes is for every home to have at least one NOAA Weather Radio Receiver. The radio receiver turns itself on and sounds a loud alarm when a watch or warning is issued to the listener’s area. Even if a person is asleep or otherwise occupied, they will be alerted immediately to weather danger as the NWS operates twenty-five transmitters in Arkansas. Additional information on NOAA Weather Radio

Severe Weather Safety Tips from the National Weather Service

Take cover in a sturdy building

The best place in a house/building is on the lowest floor and in an interior room. Basements, storm shelters, hallways, closets and bathrooms are great locations to go! Any room that is AWAY from windows!

Protect your head from flying debris. Blankets, pillows, sports/bike helmets, mattresses, cooking pots are all good things to use to protect your head, other than your hands.

Mobile homes are not safe shelters. Find a neighbor or friend to stay with in a sturdier structure. For a last resort, take shelter in a ditch.

Never outrun a tornado in a vehicle. Get out of the car and into a sturdy building. If none is around, lay flat in a ditch.

Highway overpasses are not safe shelters. Winds speed up as they funnel underneath the overpass creating a danger to those underneath, as well as debris flying around.

Make sure to have a NOAA Weather Radio with fresh batteries handy. Many times, severe weather can come through during the night or times when we least expect it. NOAA Weather Radio will alert you when a warning has been issued for your county.