Genesee Co. probes false emergency siren activations
Somebody is setting off sirens in Genesee County.
A $1,000 reward is being offered after incidents Tuesday night in which the county’s emergency weather/civil warning sirens were “suspiciously compromised” according to a release put out by the Genesee County 9-1-1 Authority.
The authority and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Management are investigating the cause of the false activations and working with local, state and federal agencies.
“Somehow, someone is apparently activating the sirens, which are on a VHF system,” said Montrose Township Supervisor Mark Emmendorfer, who said there have been three incidents in as many weeks. “It’s not funny and it's criminal. This time of year, tornado season, people may already be on edge and we certainly want (them) to rely on our system to take cover when there is a need.”
Emmendorfer said the system is old and “more vulnerable” to hacking and is in the process of being changed over to a more sophisticated program that would not be as easily activated.
Tuesday's siren activation at 6:25 p.m. affected the Mott College Campus area in Flint. At 11:25 p.m., the activation affected Burton, Flint, Flint Township, Gaines Township and Mundy Township.
Neither was weather-related or set off by Genesee County 9-1-1 staff.
The county stressed it is investigating all possibilities to resolve the problem and find the cause of the activations. Anyone with tips can contact CrimeStoppers on the free mobile app P3Tips.com or call 1-800-422-JAIL.