Jefferson Lab to Participate in the Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill on Thursday, March 7

  • Statewide Tornado Drill - Tuesday, March 7, 9:45 a.m.

Regularly scheduled tornado siren test for March 1 has been canceled 

NEWPORT NEWS, VA –  The U.S. Department of Energy’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility has canceled the monthly test of its tornado warning siren this week. Instead, the lab will participate in the Virginia Statewide Tornado Drill scheduled by the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) for March 7 at 9:45 a.m.  

The drill is being held by VDEM in partnership with the National Weather Service and in recognition of Severe Weather Awareness Week, March 4-8

“Jefferson Lab participates in this drill to ensure that our employees, visiting scientists and subcontractors are aware of what a tornado siren sounds like and what actions they should take in the event the siren activates,” said Tina Johnson, Jefferson Lab’s emergency manager. “The tornado siren can be heard from over a mile away, and that is also an opportunity for local communities to practice sheltering in case of severe weather.” 

During the drill, Jefferson Lab’s tornado siren will activate in the same pattern as its monthly test. The test will be carried out over a period that could last up to three minutes. The tornado siren test will be of the wavering tone (also called high-low-high or 10-4-10). Depending on weather conditions at the time of the test, the siren could be heard by anyone within a 1.5-mile radius of the lab.  

Jefferson Lab uses the siren to alert members of the lab community who are outdoors to "take cover" in the event of tornadoes and tornado warnings in the immediate vicinity of the lab. The statewide drill is being held in advance of increased seasonal threats from severe weather. 

“Participation in these drills is typically active, and we hope that the practice can start valuable conversations among our staff, friends and neighbors about how to protect themselves when severe weather approaches,” Johnson said. 

Questions about Jefferson Lab's tornado siren and monthly test notification may be directed to its Communications Office at
Contact: Kandice Carter, Jefferson Lab Communications Office, 


Jefferson Science Associates, LLC, manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, or Jefferson Lab, for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. JSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Southeastern Universities Research Association, Inc. (SURA).

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