Tornado Safety

TornadoThe City of Waukegan has large rotating outdoor warning sirens erected at various locations throughout the city to alert residents in the event of an emergency.

Warning Sirens

Sirens are tested the 1st Tuesday of every month at 10:00 a.m.

Tornado Watch

A Tornado Watch means the weather conditions are ideal for a tornado to develop. No siren warning will be sounded, so tune to your radio or television for the latest in weather information. Be prepared to take shelter.

Locally, WKRS AM 1220 and WXLC FM 102.3 provide emergency weather information.

Tornado Warning

A Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted in our general area. The warning sirens will be sounded and you should Seek shelter immediately. Do not ignore the warning sirens

All Clear Signal

When the National Weather Bureau declares an all clear, it will be announced over the radio and television. No signal will be sounded. It is very important that you have a battery powered radio and flashlight in case of a power failure.

Recommended Tornado Safety Rules

  • If outdoors, or in an automobile, seek inside shelter. Do not attempt to outrun the storm. If inside shelter is not available, lie flat in the nearest depression, such as a ditch or ravine.
  • In office buildings, the basement or an interior hallway on the lowest floor is the safest. Upper stories are unsafe. If there is no time to descend, a closet or small room with sturdy walls, or an inside hallway will give some protection against flying debris. Otherwise, under heavy furniture will do.
  • In homes with basements, seek refuge near the basement wall in the most sheltered and deepest below ground part of the basement. Additional protection is afforded by taking cover under heavy furniture or a work bench. Other basement possibilities are the smallest room with sturdy walls, or under a stairway.
  • In homes without basements, take cover in the smallest room with sturdy walls, or under heavy furniture, or a tipped-over upholstered couch or chair in the center of the house. The first floor is safer than the second or third. Stay away from windows when the storm strikes.
  • Factories, auditoriums, and other large buildings with wide free-span roofs, should have a pre-selected marked shelter area in their basements, smaller rooms or nearby. Do not remain in areas with wide, free-span roofs.
  • Mobile homes are particularly vulnerable to overturning and destruction, and should be abandoned in favor of a pre-selected shelter area.

Contact Numbers

Fire Department

  • Emergency fire or rescue: 911
  • Fire Administration: 847-249-5410
  • Fire Prevention: 847-249-5410

Police Department

  • Emergency Calls: 911

For more safety rules, download the Tornado Safety Rules Pamphlet (PDF).