Grand Rapids Township eyes better, cheaper siren coverage


GRAND RAPIDS – Grand Rapids Township trustees may be able to improve warning siren coverage and still
save up to $12,000.
During their meeting Monday, Trustee Les Heyman reported he had spoken with a representative from a siren
company who suggested the township purchase a 15B model for the area of Poe and Wapakoneta Roads.
The 15B has two 7.5 horsepower motors which can project 1.25 miles in all directions. Including an
additional controller with it, the siren was to cost between $7,000 and $12,000.
Heyman’s suggestion was to install it at the township building just 1/2 a mile from the suggested area of
Poe and Wapakoneta.
The siren’s need for single phase electric service can be run off of the township building, and a pole
would have to be installed.
But Trustee George Foos reported he had also checked with a siren company whose representative told him
the township’s current siren at Third and Mill streets could be enhanced by raising it on a higher pole.
It is below trees and the grain elevator, causing its sound to be projected downward. Foos said it
wasn’t installed on the grain elevator because the township trustees didn’t own the building. But it
uses three-phase electric service which was available at the elevator.
The company also recommended the siren be protected with a bird screen since they like building nests in
them. Foos noted when the siren rotor was recently oiled, much nesting debris was also removed. Though
it is a 1960s model, it has only one moving part and is still in good shape.
When it was announced by some attendees they can hear McClure’s warning siren and Weston’s, Foos
suggested just moving the town’s current siren to a new location, possibly by Wapakoneta Road or the
sewage plant. The concern was whether the siren can be heard to the edges of the township.
If the current siren is simply moved to provide better coverage of the township, then a second siren will
not need to be purchased.
One guest offered the idea of moving the siren to the water tower which was favorably received by the
trustees. It was discussed that a crane would be needed to put it on top of the tower and three-phase
electric to be installed for it. The trustees agreed to send a letter to village council regarding the
Foos agreed to get siren figures from the three major manufacturers as well as costs for a bird screen.

Fire Chief Lon Tonjes reported he went through the grant application for a new fire station but it wanted
such incredibly detailed information related to how "green" the station would be, it wasn’t
submitted. It also requested information about the land on which it would be built, and Tonjes noted the
fire department doesn’t have any land yet.
Heyman, who temporarily left the meeting, returned to say he had attended council’s meeting to ask them
to reconsider the resolution to lease land to the township (a portion of the former middle school
property). He said he informed council the trustees were only interested in buying the land. Since the
issue wasn’t on the agenda, Heyman said it wasn’t discussed but taken under advisement.
"I told them we didn’t want a lease deal," he said.
The trustees reviewed the 2010 estimate of revenue. Fiscal Officer Cary Long said it is about the same as

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