ELMER OK (KSWO) -When bad weather strikes, people rely on outdoor storm sirens to warn them to stay alert. While most cities have them, there are a few that don't including the small town of Elmer in Jackson County. But with help from county and town officials they will soon have one just in time for the severe storms predicted this week.
Mayor Jackie Drone said she is extremely happy, and said residents are also very excited. Drone said it would not have been possible without help from
the Town of Duke, PSO Oklahoma, and the Jackson County Emergency Management Office.
The small town of Elmer has about 120 people and for the first time they have an outdoor storm siren.
"We are all very excited there is a lot of elderly people here in town and there are not very many storm cellars in our town so this will at least alert everyone so that they can take cover somewhere," said Drone.
The siren is something residents always wanted, but with money being an issue they had to find a different route.
Jackson County Emergency Management Director Erik Mowbray was there to help.
"On my second day of the job I had a meeting with them and they wanted to know how we could get one and so that was my first task being the emergency manager," Mowbray said.
Mowbray worked with city and county officials advising a plan that involved the town of Duke, PSO Oklahoma and the Emergency Management Office.
"Duke put in for a grant and got a brand new one so this is just there surplus," said Mowbray.
"Erik is an amazing man he helped us get it from Duke and between him and Scott Hall I don't know what Elmer will do," said Drone.
Mayor Drone adds the siren will not cost the town of Elmer a penny. PSO Oklahoma will install it on the corner of 4th Street and Neville Avenue.
Mowbray said Deputy Scott Hall will control it.
"He lives in Elmer and he will be watching the weather. He just went through storm spotter training," Mowbray said.
A tornado swept through the town just three years ago and that was before they had the siren.
Mayor Drone said it was tough going door to door alerting residents of bad weather, but now with the new siren they won't have too.
"It was terrible and when that one did hit, it was horrible we were running around trying to cover every bodies windows with plastic or whatever we could get a hold of. It's bad because there are a lot of older folks down here that can't get out and do any of that. It's a very big help, everyone is excited," said Drone.
Mowbray said he is working with the City of Altus to get storm sirens installed in other towns across the county.
The City of Altus recently got three new storm sirens and Mowbray is working to get some of their older ones donated to the small towns of Warren and Friendship.