West Fargo Fire Department receives new emergency siren


WEST FARGO—West Fargo Fire Department is the first in the metro with what's being called a "howler siren" to one of it's vehicles, that will add a rumbling sensation when crews are heading to a scene.

An emergency siren is going to sound and feel a little different, all from two speakers.

The new Battalion Chief's SUV is the first in the metro with what's called a "Howler Siren."

The speakers shoot out low-frequency sounds that give an almost vibrating feeling.

"Gives people a notification that we're kind of behind them if they don't hear or see us," said Kendel Frost, Battalion Chief.

The idea is to get people to pull over sooner, especially drivers on the phone or with loudspeakers, which has been an ongoing issue for the department.

"We have had issues in the past where they don't see you or hear you, but hopefully the added feature will help." "Before we'd get within 20 feet for them to see us, now we're back to 40 to 50 feet," said Frost.

The department hopes it will help cut down response time to emergency calls.

"To safely do it is the biggest thing. Get to a scene safely. We don't want to cause traffic delays or accidents," said Frost.

Right now the SUV is the only one with the Howler siren, but if they see success they want to add it to other vehicles including the engines, and right now it's looking good.

"Had it out to about half a dozen calls. Barely have to get close to them and traffic is already parting. tells me it's working," said Frost.

A relatively small change, that could have some big effects in a job where every minute counts.

West Fargo says other departments across have seen success with the Howler sirens so they're optimistic on the effectiveness.