AUSTIN, Texas—The University of Texas at Austin will conduct the first test of a new outdoor siren warning system at 11:50 a.m. on Wednesday, March 7.
The system test lasts one minute, and no action is necessary during the test. Monthly tests will begin with the announcement, "This is a test." If sirens are activated, and do not announce, "This is a test," it means there is an emergency and those outside should seek shelter immediately. If a severe weather warning is issued for the area on a scheduled test day, the test will be cancelled for that month.
The university has developed comprehensive emergency management plans that prepare the university to deal with and recover from events, such as severe weather or pandemic influenza outbreaks. Steps the university has taken include the establishment of an emergency command center during events, a Web site with up-to-date information concerning any emergencies affecting campus and the siren system that was installed last month to alert people outside to seek shelter when conditions warrant. This siren system applies to other emergencies (for example, an armed individual on campus or environmental hazard) as well.
The siren system will only be used for emergencies that present a danger to the main campus. For example, the sirens would not be sounded for a tornado watch in Travis County, but they would be sounded for a tornado warning (a tornado on the ground) where the campus is in the forecast path. The University of Texas at Austin Police Department will activate the sirens.
For more information contact: Rhonda Weldon, 512-471-4472.