March 22, 2014
The Upson County Emergency Management Agency recently replaced the old emergency siren in Yatesville with a refurbished Thunderbolt siren, which is larger and louder and rotate to spread the sound out farther. In the first photo, Yatesville Fire Department Chief Ronnie Riggins and Yatesville Mayor Cecil Moncrief (backs to camera) look up at the old siren (left) and the Thunderbolt siren sitting next to it. To signify the transfer of duties, the old siren was sounded for three minutes, then the new siren was sounded. In the second photo, Upson County District 3 Commissioner Ralph Ellington and EMA Director Martha Anne McCrary (to his left rear) plug their ears as the new louder siren goes off. The third photo shows the Thunderbolt siren to the left and the old siren to the right. This is the second of two Thunderbolt sirens; the first one went up in The Rock several months ago. The two sirens are not new to Upson County; they were used years ago, but the EMA stopped using them because replacement parts were no longer made. But EMA Director Martha Anne McCrary found a man in Dodge County who refurbishes the Thunderbolt sirens, which are less expensive to fix than the newer fully electric type of sirens, especially if they get struck by lightning. McCrary also applied for and received a Response and Recovery grant through FEMA and GEMA which will pay 85 percent of the $50,000 cost of the sirens, with Upson County paying the remaining 15 percent, or $7,500. The old sirens taken down will be relocated to other areas of the county in need of warning sirens.