Every county in the state participated in a tornado drill Wednesday morning, though it seemed like just a normal day in Jefferson County.
That?s because the tornado sirens that were supposed to sound at 10:15 a.m. didn?t. The county has three in Fairfield and one in Batavia, Lockridge and Packwood, and none of them made a sound. Emergency Management Coordinator Brett Ferrel said an electronic malfunction at the Jefferson County Law Center?s dispatch office prevented the signal from being sent to the sirens.
The problem was fixed within a few hours. That afternoon, dispatch performed a ?silent test? to see if the signal was working, but which didn?t sound the sirens, and it worked.
The statewide tornado sirens were part of Severe Weather Awareness Week organized by the National Weather Service and Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds. Ferrel said it was an opportunity for businesses and homeowners to practice a tornado drill.
Jefferson County tests its tornado sirens on the first Saturday of the month during the summer from April through September.