Emergency Warning System

The Watauga Fire Department has three (3) types of warning devices used to warn residents of a potential safety threat. These include: 

  • Outdoor Warning Sirens: Watauga Warning Sirens are connected to a combined communication center that includes the cities of Haltom City, Richland Hills, and North Richland Hills. The sirens in all cities ae automatically activated if a Tornado Warning is issued by the National Weather Service for any one city.

    Watauga Warning Sirens may also be activated manually by a public safety agency or storm spotter for other dangerous weather conditions.

    The activation of an outdoor warning siren is an indication that dangerous weather is occurring or is imminent. If you hear an outdoor siren seek shelter immediately.
  • Alert Radio: NOAA Weather Radio provides messages about current weather conditions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Certain radios may be set up to only alert for Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME).
  • CivicReady: This is an Emergency Telephone Notification System that makes mass calls to warn citizens of a potential hazard or special message.
 Procedures Used for the Activation of Warning Systems

Outdoor Warning Sirens:

  1. National Weather Service issues a Tornado Warning for Tarrant County.
  2. Tornado activity has been reported in Tarrant County by a reliable source (public safety agency, storm spotter, etc.).
  3. Winds sustained in excess of 60 MPH or greater.
  4. Hail in excess of 1 inch reported in the area by a reliable source.

Alert Radio:

The National Weather Service controls the alert radio system and provides 24/7 weather broadcasts.


  1. The authority to activate this system lies with the City Manager, Police Chief, and Fire Department Administrators.
  2. The system will primarily be used for safety warnings of all types. It may be activated for a crime warning, an evacuation, or if there is the threat of severe weather.
  3. If a message is sent about shelter in place, another message will be broadcast to advise when the issue is clear and danger no longer exists.

Upon hearing a warning or NOAA weather radio or the Outdoor Warning sirens, citizens should seek shelter and additional information from television news, weather radio, or other radio station. Do not go outside to view cloud formation or current conditions. Tornado activity can happen within a matter of minutes.