By Anna Jauhola
Residents of Hallock may have noticed over the last several months three of the fire sirens do not all sound. Last year, the sirens experienced a malfunction and would not shut off when signaled.
Since then, Police Chief Mike Docken said the three sirens on the north, east and south ends of town have been disconnected and only the siren on the Hallock City Hall has been operating.
At the Monday, July 6 city council meeting, Docken presented two quotes for replacement controllers to update how the sirens operate. Currently, the sirens are operated through a World War II-era system, which is connected via telephone wire.
The new controllers are wireless and will operate through a signal from the Kittson County Sheriff’s Office.
The council approved the low quote from Stone’s Mobile Radio, Grand Forks, for $13,340, which will replace all four controllers. Plus, earlier this year, Docken received word his grant applications to TC Energy and Enbridge were successful for $5,000 and $7,500, respectively. The city will only pay about $840 out of pocket for the new controllers.
All the same sirens will remain in Hallock, only the controller will be replaced, Docken said after councilors asked what all will be switched out.
“To replace two sirens plus the controllers would have been $35,000,” Docken said. “This is just a control box. And (the sirens) are compatible with the new controller system.”
On Friday, July 10, Docken told the Enterprise the controller boxes have been ordered and will arrive in about a month.
And if residents are wondering whether the sirens will start sounding at noon and 6 p.m. again – the answer is no. He said the state authorities recommend not sounding the whistle anymore to indicate the time.
By Anna Jauhola