Warning Siren Means "Shelter in Place
PLEASE NOTE: Listen to a recording of a City alert tone that would warn residents to shelter in place (mp3) and view or download a list of area industries and municipalities, along with an accompanying schedule of alarm test dates and times.
- A community-wide emergency alert occurs during:
- A major hazardous materials (HAZMAT) incident;
- Any major traffic interruption that affects the city at large or the greater metro area over an extended period of time, such as bridge collapse might;
- Hazardous weather events like a tornado or flash flooding conditions.
- In the event of a chemical release or other hazardous materials incident where public health could be affected, emergency dispatchers sound the 15 sirens that are located throughout Pasadena, specifically along major traffic routes and thoroughfares to indicate that a shelter in place order is in effect. Although the City does test the sirens on one Thursday evening each month, emergency officials say it is always better to err on the side of caution, and of safety, when you hear a siren.
When a shelter in place is issued, immediately go inside your home and remain there until an all-clear is issued. If possible, choose a small, interior room, with no or few windows in which to wait. Close all doors and windows and, to create a tighter seal, lock them as well. If a chemical release is involved, turn off any central air-conditioning or heating.
Anyone at work or at a business location should follow similar steps. Businesses should close their doors and turn off the air-conditioning or heating. Avoid selecting a room with mechanical equipment, like ventilation blowers or pipes, because this equipment may not be able to be sealed from the outdoors. If you are a customer, client or visitor in the building when a shelter in place is issued, you should stay there until the all-clear is sounded, in order to avoid driving or walking outdoors.
During the incident, try to minimize phone usage as much as possible. Do not call 9-1-1 unless there is an emergency at your location, and do not go outdoors to get more information. Instead, to get updates on the situation, residents should check KTRH AM 740, the official emergency radio news source for Pasadena. City resources, like the City website, Nixle text messages to your cell phone if your are a free subscriber, Facebook or Pasadena Channel, will also be posting information as soon as it becomes available, along with local radio and TV stations.
Hurricane safety starts with common sense preparation
cause massive damage and injury, but they're not our only weather
concern along the Gulf Coast. Large storm systems can bring havoc with
their high winds and flash flooding potential, leaving a trail of
serious injury and property damage in their wake.
There's not a lot we can do to prevent these weather events, but a few
common sense preparations can make a big difference
in how much inconvenience we experience during and after these events,
and how ready we'll be to react effectively should we be called on to
help our family or neighbors.
- If you live in an area threatened by storm surge - an EVACUATION ZONE - discuss
evacuation plans with your family. Check with city or county officials to find
out if your home is in an evacuation zone. Plan your evacuation route now using a zip code-based map that displays both main evacuation corridors as well as other evacuation connecting roadways.
- Make a checklist of
preparations to be made before an evacuation and go over it with your family.
Review it again when a storm is in the Gulf of Mexico.
- If you plan to
stay in a hotel or motel, make reservations and confirm your reservations before
you leave. If you plan to stay in a shelter, bring what you need to be
comfortable, including bedding and toys for kids.
- Prepare an emergency
kit for your pets and a plan for how to care for them when you are on the road
and in a shelter or motel. Do not leave your pets behind!
- Refill and
re-check supplies after every storm. Depending on storm damage, some people may be able to
return home in a matter of days, for others re-entry may take longer.
- Finally, stay informed by monitoring the news media. Local officials
will provide information about current conditions, evacuations and re-entry.
Get more hurricane preparedness information at OHSEM's web site
There are two excellent guides to weather emergency preparations. This Red Cross guide is a quick start that will give you a check list of the
basics you must cover to adequately protect yourself from the worst of
storm ravages. The second, a NOAA/FEMA/Red
collaboration, provides in-depth information on the mechanics of storm activity,
geographic hot spots, historic hurricanes we've experienced and an whole
Would you prefer to do your initial research using videos? Click to see a Ready.gov page with helpful info in video format on general preparations, preparations for seniors and those with disabilities, and how to prepare your pet.
It's not just hurricanes that we may face. Get a great overview of proven preparedness strategies for many catastrophic weather events here.