|Updated: 2/21 11:21 am
||Published: 2/20 4:33 pm
TULSA, Okla. - The National Weather Service in Tulsa is buying new equipment to fix problems with its weather alert system.
Thursday morning, some weather radios wouldn't work because of a downed phone line.
FOX23 talked to NWS officials and found out their equipment is about 10 years old and due for an upgrade.
“If it loses audio, then the whole system could shut down,” said Steve Piltz with NWS.
That's what happened around 8 a.m. Thursday. Piltz said the system was giving them problems and the signal was losing strength hours before.
“It is something that you do worry about because it is something that you do want, the system working at 100 percent,” he said.
But it's not, and hasn't been for a while.
“We've seen the system here in Tulsa age over really many, many years and we've seen the actual footprint that it transfers over kind of gradually shrink,” said Piltz.
The western parts of Creek County don't get the coverage it did 10 years ago, and for hours Thursday no one could hear a thing.
The odds of that happening again should decrease. They're upgrading their system next month.
“And we also anticipate doubling the power, so we should be twice as strong and on a brand new system, so we should really have a pretty good signal here,” said Piltz.
In preparation for extreme weather, the new system will have a dual transmitter. That means if one fails, then one is on standby.
Piltz said with installation, the total cost could run near $100,000.