City of Lake Ozark set to expand outdoor warning siren system

DAN FIELD
The green-shared areas represent existing coverage by the City of Lake Ozark and Ameren Missouri sirens. The darker-shared areas represent the additional coverage areas if four proposed sirens are funded and installed.

The City of Lake Ozark is staged for the expansion of its outdoor warning siren system.

The board of aldermen recently accepted an Outdoor Warning Siren System Planning Study conducted by Miller Companies and coordinated and funded by the Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments. 

The study pin-pointed areas of the city that are not being served by the city’s two existing warning sirens at the Lake Ozark Fire Stations on Bagnell Dam Blvd. and Welsh Road. 

The sirens are battery operated and rely on solar power to charge the batteries.

In addition, Ameren has three sirens to alert residents and individuals near Bagnell Dam and along the Osage River for five miles. 

City Administrator Dave Van Dee said now that potential areas of need have been identified, the city will seek disaster relief grants to cover the cost of installing the sirens. His hope is that funding can be secured for all four locations, but if that doesn’t occur the city may pursue a lease-purchase agreement.

It’s hoped the sirens can be installed before the start of severe weather season next spring.

Background

Council of Local Governments Executive Director Linda Connor explained grants from disaster assistant grants from state and federal agencies funded study. 

The City of Lake Ozark and the City of Osage Beach have omni-directional sirens that operate on the same settings and that overlap in coverage since the cities are adjoining. This creates a situation that requires joint activation since weather patterns and emergency situations frequently affect both cities.

Osage Beach dispatch center monitors National Weather Service tornado warnings. When a tornado warning is issued for either Miller or Camden county the Osage Beach dispatcher activates the Osage Beach sirens. Concurrently, the Lake Ozark sirens automatically activate on the same dispatch command.

Upon activation, the dispatcher will contact Ameren control room at Bagnell Dam so the sirens under control of Ameren can be activated.