From The Arkansas Democrat Gazette
Northwest Arkansas Edition
New sirens shake ground to get drivers to pull over
BY JACOB QUINN SANDERS
Forced to share the road with newer vehicles that are engineered to cancel out road noise, and with drivers distracted by cell phones, iPods and bass pumping (sic)stereo systems, Little Rock police and firefighters are using a new kind of emergency siren that motorists can feel.
The siren, which the two departments demonstrated Wednesday, emits a lower, denser tone that’s reminiscent of 1980s hip-hop, as opposed to the shrieking whine that usually emits from racing fire and police vehicles.
The idea behind the new siren is that vibrations from its lower tones project along the ground and into the structures of vehicles, getting the drivers’ attention to help clear the road for city vehicles barreling toward emergencies.
Little Rock has spent $600,000 so far installing the device, called the Howler, on four Fire Department battalionchief (sic) vehicles and on 34 police cars, with plans to install hundreds more.
The Fire Department has tested the Howler on the road for the past three months.
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