Depoe Bay issued high wind alarm, not ‘tsunami siren,’ Saturday

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Depoe Bay Fire District was reassuring people Saturday that there was no threat of a tsunami after the emergency sirens were activated. 

According to Depoe Bay Fire Chief Daniels, the emergency sirens were activated at 10 a.m. due to the predicted high wind watch that started Saturday afternoon. He said it was an alert for the approaching weather system. 

This resulted in numerous concerned and panicked calls made to dispatch. 

Depoe Bay issued a statement Monday about the alert saying that the decision to activate the Emergency Warning system was based on a discussion between the mayor, city recorder, director of public works, and two members of the EWS Protocol Committee.

The city said the message broadcast was not about a tsunami, but was about a high wind warning – one of six prerecorded messages the system can air.

The warning system announced, “Alert, Alert. There is a High Wind Warning in effect for Depoe Bay and surrounding areas. People are advised to take appropriate action. Check reliable media resources for additional information,” and it repeated twice. The verbal message was preceded and followed by a high frequency wail tone.

The city reminds residents that the Emergency Warning System is not a “tsunami siren.”

The activation Saturday was the first time it was used for non-testing reasons since it was put in place years ago.

The fire district clarified there was no tsunami threat to Depoe Bay and there was no earthquake.  

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