BELLEVILLE, Ill. – Federal funding will be used to replace old warning sirens across St. Clair County and install additional devices.

Herb Simmons, director of the St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency, confirmed to FOX 2 that 79 sirens will be replaced, and 43 new units installed in locations where there are no warning systems.

The installation should be completed within the next 170 days or May/June 2023. The sirens will go off whenever there is a warning from the National Weather Service.

According to a report in the Belleville News-Democrat, sirens in East St. Louis and Cahokia Heights haven’t worked in decades, while other parts of the county don’t even have warning devices.

The county has been devastated by tornadoes and flash flooding in the past year, including the December 2021 tornado that killed six people at an Amazon warehouse in Edwardsville.

The $2.49 million cost of installation and replacement is being covered by money from the American Recovery Act.