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University Relations

University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943





tornado.drill

UCM to Participate in Statewide Tornado Drill

Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (Feb. 24, 2014) – With the coming of spring and the potential for severe weather, the University of Central Missouri will enhance its emergency preparedness efforts by participating in the statewide tornado drill at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4.

The drill will last about 15 minutes, and will take place at the same time other drills are being conducted in communities across the state, including Warrensburg.  As the event begins, warnings will be issued via sirens, building public address systems, and Textcaster, the university’s emergency text message service, to alert the UCM community. All UCM students, employees, and administrators are encouraged to participate in the event by taking the same precautions they would employ during a real tornado emergency. Faculty members are asked to temporarily dismiss class and help guide their students toward the lowest possible level of the building, and office supervisors should do the same with their employees. Residence hall staff should also be prepared to guide students to the safest locations in campus housing units. Although an "all clear" signal is not typically provided during a real tornado event, at the conclusion of the drill an “all clear” signal will be issued via UCM’s emergency alert system so that classes and offices can then resume normal operations.

 In preparation for the drill, UCM is encouraging members of the campus community to familiarize themselves with locations that have been designated as safe areas during a tornado emergency. More than 1,500 posters were placed in campus buildings in 2012 notifying individuals where the closest safe areas are located in various building, in addition to providing safety tips for an emergency situation. Members of the campus community are encouraged to review tornado procedures listed on those posters.

Here are just a few tips to keep in mind in any tornado emergency:

  • Go to the lowest level of the building, preferable a basement or low-level interior hallway.
  • Avoid glass and open areas where you could be injured by flying debris.
  • Avoid auditoriums, gymnasiums, cafeterias or other types of large open areas, with free-spanning roofs.
  • If outdoors and there is no time to escape, lie flat in the nearest depression (i.e., ditch or ravine).
  • Be aware that heavy rains may flood excavation areas, ditches or ravines.
  • Off-campus students should be aware of off-campus/community shelters.
  • If outdoors and there is no time to escape, lie flat in the nearest depression (i.e., ditch or ravine).

The same information is also available on page 22 of UCM’s Emergency Operations Plan. Individuals who have not signed up for Textcaster, the emergency text message service, also are encouraged to do so prior to the tornado drill.

The statewide tornado drill is being coordinated by the State Emergency Management Agency.