About the Community Alert Siren System

Made up of 50 strategically placed sirens throughout the EPZ, the Community Alert Siren System provides reliable, prompt notification to the general public to turn on their radio or television for important information from local authorities in the event of an emergency. While originally created to alert the public in the unlikely event of an emergency at San Onofre, the community alert system will remain in place to help notify residents of other types of emergencies.

Should an event occur, residents in San Clements, Dana Point, San Juan Capistrano and Camp Pendleton will hear a piercing siren that will sound steadily for three minutes at a time.

Siren activation is a coordinated process among local jurisdictions. Jurisdictions are responsible for activating sirens in their community. As a backup measure, Orange County has the ability to activate all sirens except for those at Camp Pendleton.

Along with the sirens, roving public address systems and/or messages to home, cell or business phones via AlertOC are also a signal to turn on a radio or television and wait for instructions.

WHAT TO DO: TURN ON THE RADIO OR TV

If the sirens have been activated, turn on the television or the radio to KWVE FM 107.9 (Santa Ana) or KOGO AM 600 (San Diego).

An Emergency Alert System (EAS) message will be delivered by radio and TV. It may advise you to stay inside with doors and windows closed, evacuate the area, or do nothing depending on the nature of the emergency.

RELIABILITY WITH MAINTENANCE & TESTING

Southern California Edison (SCE) is responsible for maintaining and testing the siren system through 2019. Ensuring that all the sirens will work properly in a real emergency is a top priority. The regular testing of sirens includes:

  • Silent Tests – Tests the connections between the sirens and control centers.
  • Growl Tests – Brief audible test of each siren to ensure siren will sound.
  • Check your city's website for schedules for growl testing.

WHAT IF THE SIRENS ARE A FALSE ALARM?

  • Check radio and TV stations, as well as your city's web-site and this site, just as you would in a real emergency.
  • Do not assume a siren might be a false alarm, no matter what you hear from neighbors or friends. When in doubt, find out your city's emergency response team to provide professional guidance about how best to protect your family.

What a Siren Sounds Like

Listen to this audio file to hear what the siren sounds like.

Play Sample Siren