Outdoor Warning Systems

Walworth County Outdoor Warning Sirens:

The outdoor warning sirens are one means for receiving severe weather alerts in Walworth County. Walworth County Citizens and Visitors should be aware that not all areas in Walworth County are covered by outdoor warning sirens. The warning siren systems are not owned or maintained by the county, but rather by individual municipalities at their discretion.  The sirens are activated by the Walworth County Sheriff Communications Center, and in some cases individual municipalities are also capable of activating their individual sirens. The outdoor warning sirens are activated for tornado warnings and damaging winds greater than 80 mph.  Currently when the Walworth County Sheriff Communications Center activates sirens, all sirens are activated.  Walworth County works closely with the National Weather Service to ensure severe weather information is accurate and timely.

Problems with outdoor warning sirens: 

The warning sirens are intended to be heard outside

Sirens are NOT to:

•wake you up at night, especially if storms (rain and wind) are creating additional noise.
•alert you if you are indoors, especially in newer, more energy-efficient, and better-insulated homes with additional electronic noise (like air conditioners, stereos, or television on).
•reach every location in a municipality. Outside, environmental factors such as the direction and speed of the wind, relative humidity, and air stability can affect where sirens are heard on any given day.

Use and Testing:

The sirens in the warning area will only sound once, at the onset of the warning, and no 'all clear' signal will be sent. Sirens are tested the third Wednesday of every month at approximately 12:00pm. On days when weather is severe or the National Weather Service has already issued watches or warnings the test will not be completed. 

If you hear the Tornado Siren:

Please DO NOT call 911 to inquire about the siren. If you hear the siren, it should be an indication you need to seek shelter and seek additional information.  Tune to local radio stations: Whitewater WSLD 104.5FM, Lake Geneva WLKG 96.1 FM or other broadcast media, or internet sources of weather information.

All current Wisconsin weather alerts can be found at the following link:


Due to the possibility of not hearing the tornado sirens you should have multiple means of receiving severe weather warnings such as a NOAA weather radio, smart phone app, and/or local broadcast media.

Sign Up for Alerts

Walworth County provides citizens and visitors with a means of signing up to receive weather alerts via text, email, and voice call from the National Weather Service for severe weather emergencies.  Signing up for the service also allows citizens to receive alerts from the county for other emergencies which may require their action. You can sign up for these alerts for free by following the link.

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