air raid siren #108
los angeles, ca

Over 200 civil defense air raid sirens were built in Los Angeles from wwii through the cold war. Designed to provide audible early warnings of enemy air attacks, the sirens operated for over 40 years before being abandoned in the 1980’s. The generalized warning of the air-raid siren was made obsolete by the implementation of the emergency broadcast system which could broadcast through tv and radio networks with specfic instructions in case of a natural or man-made disaster. Following September 11th, the Los Angeles city council proposed reactivating the sirens, fearing that commercial broadcast systems might fail in a terrorist attack, that idea was abandoned. This photographic survey document some of the original air raid sirens remaining on the streets of Los Angeles.

keith schoenheit