Township works to fix malfunctioning tornado siren

FLUSHING TWP. — The township is working to get one of its tornado sirens running properly after it malfunctioned during a recent severe storm.

Supervisor Fred Thorsby said a siren located at Seymour Elementary School on N. Seymour Road didn’t go off when a tornado warning was issued for Genesee County on July 24.

As reported by Genesee County Emergency Management, the siren has been rotating but not making any noise during the county’s regularly scheduled tests on the first Saturday of each month.

“According to the report we got from the county, the siren stopped working in March,” Thorsby said. “We weren’t aware that it was malfunctioning going back that far until they notified us a month ago.”

Thorsby said he contacted West Shore Services last month before the storm to have the siren fixed. West Shore, based in Allendale, is the siren company that installed the township’s four tornado sirens in 2017 at Seymour Elementary, Flushing Township Hall, Elms Elementary and Flushing Middle School.

“West Shore is aware of the problem, and they should be sending a crew out soon,” Thorsby said. “They cover the whole state and have a lot of sirens to take care of.”

Thorsby said that the township’s other sirens were operating properly when the tornado warning was issued.

As confirmed by the National Weather Service, an EF-1 tornado ripped through the northern section of Clayton Township on July 24, clocking winds speeds around 100 mph and damaging several barns, garages and outbuildings around the Calkins and Morrish road areas.

Meanwhile, strong winds from the same weather system toppled trees and caused scattered power outages and minor damage to some homes in the City of Flushing and Flushing Township. No tornadoes were reported in the Flushing area.

Tornado sirens also malfunctioned in Davison Township, Clayton Township and Argentine Township during the July 24 storm. Those sirens are maintained by West Shore Services.