Austria to test civil defence alarm system on Saturday

Aaron Burnett
Aaron Burnett - [email protected]
Austria to test civil defence alarm system on Saturday
Civil warning sirens. Austria has a comprehensive system that is tested frequently. (Photo by STAN HONDA / AFP)

Around midday Saturday could be a noisy one for people living in Austria, as the country tests its civil defence alarm.


Between noon and 12:45 that day, people will hear three siren signals – one for ‘warning,’ one for ‘alarm’ and one for ‘all clear.’

Some 8,300 sirens around the country will be tested, both to ensure that they work and to familiarise people living in Austria with their meaning.

The trial will first start with a siren test that will last for 15 seconds. Then the warning signal, consisting of 3 minutes of a constant tone, instructs everyone to switch on public radio or television (ORF) or log onto the Internet for more information.

A one minute howling tone for ‘alarm’ then signals people to take shelter and to check public broadcasting for further instructions.

Finally, a constant tone for one minute signals the all-clear.


The warning system is intended to be used for real in dire emergency situations, from acute natural disasters to terrorist attacks.

READ ALSO: What you should know about the warning siren system



Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also