Georgia Officials Urge People To Stop Calling 911 To Report Noisy Cicadas

By Kelly Fisher

May 24, 2021

Cicadas are coming back after nearly two decades, and some Georgians might not be thrilled about their return — but it’s no emergency.

“Brood X” cicadas are emerging this year after 17 years. The red-eyed insects were last seen in 2004.

But apparently, as more Georgians begin to encounter them, they opt to call emergency services.

Union County says residents are calling 911 because of “alarms” sounding, which end up being the noisy 17-year cicadas.

Officials urged the public to stop calling 911 in a post on the Union County Fire/Rescue & EMA Facebook page:

"Union County E911 is receiving multiple 911 calls for ‘alarms’ in the neighborhood. More than likely these ‘alarms’ are not alarms at all but a bug, Brood X. This brood of cicadas emerges every 17 years and is endemic in most of the eastern United States. They also have a range of different sounds they can produce, making them some of the loudest of all insects. It is often difficult to pinpoint where the sound is coming from and can sound like a vehicle or home alarm system. Their song can be loud enough to cause hearing loss as they can produce sounds up to 120 db. They feed on sap and do not have a major impact on agriculture but may overwhelm small plants. They cannot sting or bite but may mistake you for a tree branch. So, if you think you hear an alarm ensure that it is an alarm and determine the location before contacting authorities.”

Union County E911 is receiving multiple 911 calls for “alarms” in the neighborhood. More than likely these “alarms” are...

Posted by Union County Fire/Rescue & EMA on Saturday, May 22, 2021

Photo: Getty Images

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