The Knox City Council received disturbing news this week. The emergency sirens that alert residents in the north side of the city do not work.
“The board that operates that siren got hit by lightning at some point in time this summer and we didn’t know it until they did a test this past week and the siren did not go off,” said Knox Mayor, Rick Chambers. “Clint got the radio repairman over here to look at that and he showed us the board that is burned up. The board is $2,700 which is a big enough problem in itself, but by the end of 2012, all the frequencies are going to change. The frequency that operates that siren will no longer be allowed and we could put in the new frequency now, but the County is still operating on the old frequency. Until they update, we can’t update.”
The frequency problem goes even further.
“That’s not our only problem, all the radio frequencies are going to have to be changed and we’re not sure if some of the old radios can be updated to the new frequencies,” the Mayor continued. “We’re going to have to get a new license for the City radios and Police Department radios. We have about three different levels of radios that have been purchased over the years. The federal government is selling off a part of that band and we’re going to a narrow broadband. This is going to happen by the start of 2013.”
In the end, the Council members realized that they couldn’t leave residents in the north part of the city without a warning system so they voted to get the burned out board repaired, even though it would be obsolete at the end of 2012.