Forrest City needs new tornado sirens

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ST. FRANCIS COUNTY, Ark. -- Forrest City officials said they are preparing for a storm.

Some of the city's tornado sirens aren't working.

So the Mayor said they were replacing them, but the cost of this upgrade gave residents sticker shock.

They're big, and hard to miss, but not all of them have been working.

And that's a problem.

"They test it randomly. It be going off a lot," said Reginal Holmes.

He said the tornado siren across from his house was working.

Neighbors said they test it regularly.

Dustin Paulman said it's loud, but it doesn't scare him, and now he knew what to do when they sound.

"We go get in a room with no windows and we cut off all the lights. Get somewhere where it's safe," he said.

The Mayor of Forrest City said a recent test showed several of these sirens across the city aren't working and need to be replaced.

The new sirens would omnidirectional so the sound would carry further.

The mayor also said he had $150 thousand in the bank to spend on these upgrades.

Everyone we talked to was surprised to hear how much this technology costs.

"I thought it was going to be like $35 hundred," Holmes said. "I didn't know it was going to be $16 thousand! It's a high price but you know you need them."

The mayor planned to buy 6 or 8 of the new sirens, but the existing ones would stay up and running until they were installed over the coming months.

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