Beginning next week March 5, testing of the outdoor warning sirens will occur the first Monday of each month at 12:30 PM. Previously testing occurred the last Friday of the month. Through a series of approved Homeland Security grants, the majority of existing sirens will be upgraded to allow the St. Clair County Central Dispatch Authority to target activation of only the sirens in an affected area rather than a complete county-wide activation. Three or four communities in the county continue to use their sirens to alert their firefighters for emergency calls although each fire department has alerting pagers. Regardless, a new education program will be established in the county to inform residents that “when the siren sounds, go indoors and turn on local media.” This addresses the critical issue of providing maximum warning lead time to protect our residents and guests. This new campaign is anticipated to begin in June of this year. St. Clair County residents will also begin to see other means of emergency notification that will become available throughout 2012.