During a routine test of the San Mateo County Coast tsunami sirens on Aug. 7, it was discovered by the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office Area of Emergency Services that only three of the eight sirens between Pacifica and Pescadero are performing correctly.
Since the current sirens have been in service for a significant period of time and are now in need of an upgrade, a replacement project for all eight of the sirens is scheduled to start on Aug. 12 and be completed in time for the monthly test scheduled for Sept. 4, according to a San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson.
The tsunami sirens are intended to provide emergency warning to people who may be at risk if a significant tsunami were to strike the County’s coast.
During the replacement of the eight sirens, the Area Office of Emergency Services has developed a set of procedures to ensure the public will be notified during this outage.
"Public safety is important to us during this siren system upgrade project," stated San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office Dep. Rebecca Rosenblatt in a prepared press release.
The plans involve having additional Sheriff’s deputies and police officers from throughout the County respond to the Coastside should a tsunami warning need to be issued. The additional law enforcement officers will provide announcements to the public and neighborhoods.
The sirens are only one part of the notification system available to inform Coastside communities. If a tsunami warning is issued notifications will be sent using SMC Alert, digital e-mail, cell phone text messaging, TENS telephone notification system to standard residential and business telephones and the Emergency Broadcast System through commercial radio and TV announcements.
Once the work has been completed and the sirens functionality tested, San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office Area Office of Emergency Services will notify the community that new tsunami system is operational through a series of public announcements.