April 13th, 2020 – 10:00 AM
WBHF Radio –
(Photo via WBHF Radio) A tornado warning was issued for Bartow County at 1:02 Monday morning.
While a tornado has not been confirmed, there was a death and numerous amounts of damage with the storm.
A tree fell on a residence on Fite Street near Moore’s Market; Bartow County Coroner Joel Guyton told WBHF that the deceased has been identified as 34-year-old William McConnell of Cartersville.
A residence on Fairfield Drive near Mission Road caught fire. It is believed the structure was struck by lightning. There were no injuries.
Fite Street and Cherokee Street are closed in downtown Cartersville due to fallen trees. Bartow Street has a portion closed past Main Street, due to a large tree in the road.
WBHF Radio is aware that the sirens did not go off in the county – WBHF spoke with Bartow County EMA Director Dwayne Jamison about why the sirens did not go off. He said that both city and county fire departments agreed in March 2019 that Bartow-911 would control the outdoor warning sirens. They are currently investigating why the sirens did not sound during this morning’s tornado warning at 1:02 AM.
(Bartow Fire Department:) “We are working with the Bartow County Sheriff’s Department to find out why the Tornado Sirens were not activated. Both BCFD and Cartersville Fire Department have a written policy that outlines when the 9-1-1 Center is to activate the warning sirens for both systems.”
“As we have stated many times, the sirens are only designed for warning those outside of an approaching possible tornado to take shelter. They are not designed to warn those inside structures and often cannot be heard inside. We constantly advise our citizens through the press, local radio station, and social media to sign up for Everbridge. This is the County and City of Cartersville’s preferred method of getting out all emergency messages including storm warnings. Many have commented that they received the warning on their phones. Also keep in mind that this system can activate only those devices in the warning polygons so if the warning is for Northern Bartow County, those on the South end of the county may not receive the notification.”
Also, According to the Bartow Fire Department: Fire crews responded to a structure fire on Jackson Drive on Monday morning.
This fire made the third in a 12 hour period In addition to all the late night storm related calls.
Two GSAR Task Force team members were also deployed late last night to assist in Search and Rescue efforts in Walker County.
“We are working with the Bartow County Sheriff’s Department to find out why the Tornado Sirens were not activated. Both BCFD and Cartersville Fire Department have a written policy that outlines when the 9-1-1 Center is to activate the warning sirens for both systems.”