The Ottawa County Department of Emergency Management
County Emergency Management has a special Weather Radio program which offers
Midland WR-120 Weather Radios for a special price of $25.00 each. Ottawa County Emergency Management will also provide
free programming of weather radios new or old if brought to the courthouse. The new Midland WR-120 Weather Radios are
available to everyone and can be purchased at the following locations:
Ottawa County Emergency Management Office - Programming & radios
Bennington City Hall - radios only
Delphos City Hall - radios only
Tescott City Hall - radios only
Coordinator & LEPC Vice Chairperson: Marie V. Ballou
Deputy Coordinator: Sheriff Keith Coleman
307 N. Concord, Ste 109
Minneapolis, Kansas 67467
Office Telephone 785-392-3600
Cell phone number: 785-392-7096
Fax number: 785-392-3605
The Ottawa County Emergency Management Department exists to help citizens and local governments mitigate against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters.
Our responsibilities include: developing and maintaining the Ottawa County Emergency Operations Plan, coordinating responses of public and private assistance during disasters and resource coordination following disasters.
We are available to speak to any civic group, public or private business, school, etc. on emergency preparedness issues.
With the Saline River in Tescott predicted to Crest at 29.3 feet at 7:00 am May 22, 2019 the following precautions have been put in place for Ottawa County Residents. This Historic Crest for the Saline River at Tescott is 30.14 feet in 1993 and 28.15 feet in 2011.
Ottawa County Emergency Management has sand bags available for Tescott area residents at the old cheese factory 320 S. Main Street Tescott, Kansas 67484. Please call either Tescott City Hall 785-283-4337 or Ottawa County Emergency Management at 785-392-3600. If you are outside the Tescott area you may make arrangements with Ottawa County Emergency Management to pick up sand bags in the Minneapolis area.
An Emergency Evacuation Shelter has been set up in Salina at 2624 Magnolia, 1st Covenant Church, Salina, KS 67401 with a Pet Shelter at the Tony’s Event Center Barn A being maned by KSART (Kansas Animal Response Team). Ottawa County is utilizing these shelters for its residents& pets with Transportation being provided to the shelters until/at 7:00 pm tonight by Ottawa County Transportation. Arrangements must be made by 5:00 pm tonight for transportation this evening. Transportation will also be available tomorrow 5-22-2019 after 8:00 am. Please let Ottawa County Emergency Management know if you need transportation or if you are going to the Shelter in Salina.
KDHE Cautions Kansans to Avoid Stream and Waterways
Topeka - The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is cautioning residents to stay out of Kansas waterways because of the recent flooding and associated unsafe water quality conditions.
In addition to the physical dangers associated with entering swift moving flood waters, the potential for high levels of pathogens in those waters exist. KDHE anticipates elevated levels of pathogens in rivers and streams across the state because of runoff. Additionally, over the past several days, numerous wastewater systems have experienced bypasses of sewage that enter local streams.
Individuals are advised to avoid contact with waterways and to restrict pets and livestock from entering streams and allow flood waters time to recede.
KDHE personnel are in contact with wastewater utilities in Kansas and are evaluating the extent of any bypassing.
Individuals should contact their local public works departments for questions related to their immediate area.
Siren Warnings for Ottawa County:
Sirens are designed to be heard outdoors. If your residence is near a siren site, you may be able to hear the siren inside, but because of insulated walls, closed windows, air conditioners running or television and radio noise, this is not always the case. If weather is threatening, you should have a radio, television or weather radio on to monitor the situation and not relay solely on hearing the siren. If the tornado siren is activated, you should take cover immediately in a basement or storm shelter. Know where your local storm shelters are located if you do not have one in or near your home. If these are not available, seek cover in a room or closet towards the center of the house or building, preferably one with no windows. Take along a battery operated radio for weather updates and for information on when danger is passed.
When storm clouds begin to gather, the sky becomes threatening and the National Weather Service issues advisories concerning turbulent weather conditions, area volunteer storm spotters, as well as city and county law enforcement personnel are out surveying the sky for possible tornadoes.
If a tornado is spotted or if the National Weather Service issues a warning for Ottawa County, the outdoor sirens in the affected area are activated. The Ottawa County Sheriff’s office dispatcher can activate all of the sirens in Minneapolis and surrounding towns. The tornado warning siren is a SOLID THREE MINUTE BLAST. Please remember that NO ALL CLEAR siren will be sounded. If a second three minute siren is heard, that would indicate that another tornado has been spotted and you should remain in your shelter area.
Sirens used for fire alerts are usually several shorter blasts which may vary somewhat in different towns. Most towns sound the sirens at noon each day. This is a good way to test the equipment on a regular basis. A National Security alert siren is three wailing blasts then a solid three minute blast.
Weather Radios are valuable tools and can awaken you with a loud alarm when severe weather is in the area. Every household, school or business should have a Weather Radio set in the alert mode at all times. They are relatively inexpensive and could save your life. The weather radios also have battery backup, in case of power failure, and the battery should be changed out periodically to maintain reliability.
Be Ready to Respond to Emergencies
Preparedness is the best prevention. Here are some things that you can do in order to be “Ready to Respond” to any emergency.
1. Practice Your Emergency Plan at home and at work. What is your plan for tornadoes? For Floods? For chemical spills?
2. Put together a disaster kit containing:
- Plastic containers of water
- Canned food and other non-perishable food
- A complete change of clothing and shoes for each person in your household
- Battery operated radio with extra batteries
- Flashlight and batteries
- Non-electric can opener
- Utility knife
- Matches in waterproof container or butane lighter
- Tools to shut off utilities
- Tape, paper, and pencil
- Plastic sheeting
- Soap and liquid detergent
- Toilet paper
- Personal hygiene items
- First Aid kit
3. Inspect your utilities. Have the proper tools nearby in case you need to shut them off, and reacquaint yourself with the procedures on how to turn them off.
4. Check your fire extinguishers. Are they stored in the right places? Test your smoke detectors monthly.
5. Keep your contact information up-to-date and keep copies in your Disaster Kit, car, purse/wallet and with a neighbor or relative.
6. Where are your important papers? Birth certificates, marriage certificates, legal documents, financial information, passports and other irreplaceable documents should be kept in a waterproof, fireproof container.
Your local Emergency Management office has free brochures about disaster preparations, assembling a disaster kit etc.