Refinery siren 411
If you live in Anacortes, La Conner or somewhere between within in Skagit County, you’ve likely heard Puget Sound Refinery’s emergency siren tests that happen at noon every Wednesday. Here’s the 4-1-1 on those weekly tests, why they’re so loud and what you can do today to keep yourself and family prepared.
Weekly tests and loud sirens
Weekly tests are part of Puget Sound Refinery’s safety prevention program to check and maintain equipment, so we have confidence that the equipment is in good working shape if it is ever needed.
PSR has different sirens for different levels of evacuations and those are tested and drilled on regularly. Some sirens are just for certain areas of the refinery or certain portions of the workforce, whereas some are for the entire site.
No matter which one is utilized, these sirens are loud. PSR has loud equipment, employees and contractors wear hearing protection and PSR is a large site spread across several hundred acres of land, so the sirens are designed to be heard by everyone at the refinery which in turn often makes them audible to many people in the community.
If you hear a siren
If you hear a siren at noon on Wednesday, remember it is our regular weekly test. If you hear a siren outside of that time, you can head over to our website or Facebook page to look for more information. PSR does evacuation drills throughout the year – just like all businesses and families should – to make sure everyone is prepared in case of a real emergency. It also could be an abnormal situation and the siren is being used to communicate with our team of employees and contractors to leave a certain area of the plant.
Keep yourself and family prepared
Everyone who lives or works in Skagit County can be directly notified about county emergencies, you just need to opt into the free service.
Skagit County Department of Emergency Management uses a system called CodeRED which will enable notifications to be sent directly to your phone in the event of a local emergency or another critical community alert. Some examples include evacuation notices, boil water notices and missing child reports.
Nothing is more important to Puget Sound Refinery than keeping employees, contractors and the community safe. Thank you for being engaged in emergency response efforts and for keeping yourself and your family prepared too.
Shell Puget Sound Refinery is committed to operating in a safe and environmentally sound manner - at all times. Nothing is more important than the safety of our employees, contractors and community members.