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Alarm siren tests in Switzerland

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Posts: 5
Snowman
Snowman
748 posts
top member
Feb 5, 2020 - 12:26 PM

This Wed. February 5, afternoon, alarm sirens will sound all over Switzerland. No panic, it is a test, routinely carried out every first Wednesday of February. On any other day, if you hear them listen to the radio and/or follow instructions of the authorities, there might be a major flood, a chemical pollution or any other danger.

Ildiko
Ildiko
803 posts
top member &
moderator
Feb 5, 2020 - 12:58 PM in reply to Snowman

Thank you Snowman for this information, it's very nice that you even thought of reassuring people. It is just a test and no need to panic.

I heard the siren in Lausanne too.

Thanks,

Ildiko

Peterli
Peterli
934 posts
top member
Feb 5, 2020 - 9:29 PM in reply to Snowman

Hello Snowman,

I'm sure your mention of "April 5", rather than today, February 5, was just an inadvertent slip. Yes, at 13h30 on the first Wednesday of February each year in Switzerland, supposedly with the precision of Swiss watches, the sirens start to sing (called "le chant des sirènes" in the French-speaking part of the country) all over Switzerland. In some places this could continue until 14h00. I should add that there is no guarantee that people who live in more remote locations or who are in buildings with the windows closed will hear the siren. I read that Ildiko heard it in Lausanne, so that is good.

Then, at 14h15, in places which are downstream from major dams, there is another test siren (a water alarm) that rings out. For example, people living north of the Barrage de la Grande Dixence in the Valais will surely hear this test siren.

Here is a link to an article in today's RTN where you can click on the two different sound clips (Écouter le son) to hear exactly what these two sirens sound like. www.rtn.ch/rtn/Actualite/Region/20200205-Le-chant-des-sirenes-va-retentir.html

If people hear either of these sirens at any other time, they should without delay find out what is going on and take appropriate action.

I am going to start another thread about alerts in Switzerland, including the app that you can load onto your natel.

By the way, on a semi-related note, the other day I read an article about tsunamis on the Swiss lakes.

Last modified on Feb 5, 2020 - 9:43 PM by Peterli
Ildiko
Ildiko
803 posts
top member &
moderator
Feb 5, 2020 - 9:37 PM in reply to Peterli

Hi Peterli,

Thank you for the informative post. Yes, it is February not April, I've changed it in the first post to prevent any misunderstandings.

It is good to know what happened. It was very loud, although right, the windows were open.

I've checked this site: www.ch.ch/en/alarm-signals/.

Ildiko

Last modified on Feb 7, 2020 - 7:03 AM by Annika
Peterli
Peterli
934 posts
top member
Feb 6, 2020 - 6:43 AM

Here is the link to the thread I started about alerts and safety in Switzerland: www.myswissalps.com/forum/topic/are-you-safe-civil-protection-in-switzerland

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