Sirens sounded in Denmark, and what they meant

May 24, 2018


On May 2nd 2018, the wailing of sirens were heard all across Denmark at noon.


But there was no reason to be alarmed as warning signs filled the air for a short time in the early afternoon - it's just a drill.


The siren system, with a total of 1,078 sirens enabling them to be heard by about 80 percent of the Danish population, is tested annually by the Danis Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) port of the Ministry of Defence.


The sirens are fixed to buildings or poles in cities and urban areas with populations of over 1,000 according to the agency.  In less populated areas, mobile sirens can be used.

Since 1994, the sirens have been tested annually, on the first Wednesday of May at noon.  The test lasts about 10 minutes and then everyone carries on with their daily business, quickly forgetting the unusual sound. DEMA also uses Social media to disseminate information to the public.


This does, however, leave a question.  What if the sirens go off at any other time than noon on the first Wednesday in May?  In emergency situations, the sirens can be used to warn the public in case of major incidents that require people to fo indoors to avoid being affected.


In the event of a major accident or a disaster, the police may decide to use the sirens.  At the same time an emergency message from police or other authorities will be broadcast by national TV stations DR and TV2, DEMA explains via a fact sheet available through its website.


Emergencies in which the sirens might be used can include the presence of chemical gases, radiation or hazardous smoke, the agency says.


The sirens are able to warn the entire population, Burt can also be used regionally or locally to warn specific areas.  Two distinct sounds are given by the sirens

  1. Signal 1's tone rises quickly and falls again slowly, lasting for 45 seconds.  If you hear the signal, you should go indoors and listen to the radio or watch DR or TV2 for further information.  It is also important to make sure others know how to react, DEMA says.

  2. Signal 2, a long tone lasting 45 seconds, means 'danger is over'.  It is now safe to go back outside and "return to your daily chores" according to DEMA's fact sheet.

Denmark’s 100% Whelen Mass Notification System has been in place for more than 20 years without fail! The King of Denmark has stated that Whelen Systems are good for 20 years plus!


EMALTE is proud to be the Master Distributor for Whelen Mass Notification Systems in Australia so if you would like to find out more get in touch with Mark Wolf (CEO), he is always delighted to have a chat and give you some insights into what would work for you.


Tel:      1800 66 99 80 within Australia


            61 402 432 472 outside Australia






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