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Every first Monday of the month at exactly 12 noon, the Dutch emergency siren is tested. The signal takes 1:26 minutes. If you hear the siren at that time, nothing has happened. The siren is never tested on legal holidays.

In the unlikely event that you hear the siren several times in a row or at any time other than the first Monday of the month at 12:00 p.m., there is an emergency. If this is the case, go inside, close all windows and doors and turn on the TV or radio to get information about what has happened and what you should do. You might also be given instructions by public address cars.

There are about 3.800 sirens in the Netherlands. They are operated by the local authority and used to warn citizens in case of emergencies. You won’t hear the siren where you live if a catastrophe has happened somewhere else.