Tornado Warning System

We often receive many questions in regard to the Tornado Warning System utilized by the City of Union City. Frequently asked questions include:

    1. When do we sound the sirens?


  • How do we know when the “coast is clear”?
  • Why can I not hear the sirens inside my home or business?



Answers to these questions are as follows:


  • The sirens are sounded when a Tornado Warning is issued for our area that has potential to impact the City of Union City. Typically this will occur when the National Weather Service has issued a Tornado Warning for Obion County, when a trained weather spotter or emergency service employee has confirmed the sighting of a funnel cloud. There are times when a warning for Obion County clearly will impact portions of the county without being a direct threat to the Union City area. In these instances, the decision may be made not to sound the sirens. Our intent is to provide timely warnings when severe weather is imminent in order for our citizens to depend on the system to provide “real threat” alarms. When you hear the sirens, the threat is real! When the warnings are sounded, you should move to the safest place inside your home or office avoiding outside walls and windows, if outside, move to a ditch or low lying area. Do not stay in a vehicle.


  • Our request is that every citizen in the City of Union City maintains access to a battery powered AM/FM radio as well as a weather radio. Tune in to local stations and listen to updates about weather or other disaster information as relevant. Information will be made available through these sources when the threat has passed and is safe to resume normal routines. Don’t presume that because you do not hear the sirens that the coast is clear. Please refrain from calling the Union City Police Department for information during these busy times. Communication personell are handling emergency calls and dispatch responsiblities during these times.


  • It is important to remember that the Tornado Warning System was designed as an “outdoor warning system” so that those persons unprotected by structures and unaware of news through television and radio can have adequate warning to take cover in the event of a pending tornado. The fact that many people inside buildings can hear the sirens is an added bonus to the system. This is due in large part to the strategic placement of the 7 siren locations within the Union City area.

Our goal is to provide citizens with timely information on severe weather that may impact our area.
Please understand and become familiar with how the system works.
Also take the severe weather warnings seriously when issued.