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Air raid sirens.


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Do they still sound these in your area?

Every Wednesday at noon one is declenched in the nearby town, I have yet to localise it by being in the town at the right time but it must be pretty impressive as it is still very very loud when it reaches me after travelling 3 miles or so.

15 minutes later the aircraft factory opposite sound their one which is pretty deafening being close by but probably doesnt travel as far.

And here I am supposedly not allowed to use power tools between 12.00 and 14.00 hours, not that anyone would be able to hear them over thye sound of the rivetters in the factory.

Is this a carry over from WW1 and WW2, the cold war or some other civil defence truc?

Am I perhaps supposed to know what it means and what to do if it is set off at any other time?

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Le Réseau National d'Alerte (RNA), constitué d'environ 4500

sirènes, a pour but d'alerter la population en cas de danger immédiat.

Ce réseau, hérité de la seconde guerre mondiale, conçu au départ pour

alerter les populations d'une menace aérienne, peut être utilisé pour

faire face à la montée des risques technologiques ou naturels sans pour

autant méconnaître les menaces militaires ou terroristes. Lors d'un

accident majeur ou d'une grande catastrophe (nuage toxique, accident

nucléaire...), les sirènes du RNA permettent de jour comme de nuit,

d'attirer rapidement l'attention des populations pour qu'elles prennent

les mesures de sauvegarde appropriées.


existe d’autres sirènes qui bien que ne relevant pas du régime du

R.N.A., sont néanmoins soumises aux mêmes règles. Il s'agit de celles

qui sont situées sur des sites industriels à risques (nucléaire ou

établissements SEVESO) ayant fait l’objet d’un P.P.I. (plan particulier

d’intervention) approuvé par arrêté préfectoral.

I think they test them at a special time( such as Wed 12) so people know it is a test.

We have one because of a previous industrial accident

you can


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Noon first Wednesday of every month not every Wednesday surely.

I was told that it was for the Pompiers to test their alarm and also to simply test the alarms in case of invasion. Neither, either or both could be right.

Power tools, not between 12 and 14 hours, like lawn mower usage, is an arrete prefectorale.

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Yes it probably is once a month, I am working outside at the moment so should be able to hear if its every week.

Normans response gave me a sense of déja vu, maybe I have already asked the question.

Is it only me or is the search function not working?

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They probably did test the siren, but it was set off pretty often anyhow - and the pompiers didn't half race to the fire station! There were cars left with doors open and keys still in the ignition, plus people dashing from shops and garages. It was never more than a few minutes after the siren before the fire engine set off. 
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Same same where I lived. Incredibly dedicated people in the Pompiers and at one point and maybe now, the organisation that the french trusted the most.

And so when our volunteers came round flogging their calenders, they always got a generous amount from us,even if we were stoney, they deserved it.

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There may be other local reasons, but I still maintain as above that the sounding of these alarms is part of the PPI

 un Plan Particulier d’Intervention (PPI) obligatoirement mis en

place pour faire face à un risque grave, susceptible de conduire à un

accident majeur.

It pays to know if you have one of these sites locally

Scroll down the page to the map, then click to get the address of anywhere near you


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