Tellico Plains gets tornado sirens

9:00 PM, Feb 12, 2013   |    comments
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It's been almost a year since the City of Tellico Plains was hit by a devastating EF-2 tornado. Many of the residents were unaware a tornado was heading their way until it hit. About 100 homes were destroyed, but no lives were lost.

Now, Tellico Plains has three tornado sirens donated by the Tennessee Valley Authority.

Mayor Patrick Hawkins said, "I got into contact with Mike Atkins the Economic Director for Fort Loudoun, the electric company here in Monroe County, and he made some contacts with TVA. TVA was in the process of replacing some sirens at a nuclear plant. And when they moved up to the Watts Bar plant, he called Mike and everything just kind of fell into place."

The city is responsible for installing the sirens. Mayor Hawkins said the next step is to get the computer brain needed to operate the sirens. Also, the city will put the 25-year-old sirens on new poles.

Mayor Hawkins said three locations near the schools and the city's only factory have been looked at as locations for the tornado sirens. Hawkins estimates it will take six months before the alert systems are fully operational.

Mayor Hawkins also said TVA is donating three tornado sirens to all of the Monroe County cities, for a total of 12 sirens in the county.

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