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Alert systems working well

by Karen A. Grava - April 20, 2009

The test of the University’s Alert Notification System last week was very successful, with 88 percent of Storrs campus faculty, staff, and students saying they received notice of the test within 10 minutes.

The test was the first time all the components of the Alert Notification System were tested at the same time. The system includes sirens and code blue phones on the Storrs and Depot campuses, text messages, e-mail, the alert banner system on University Web pages, and voice mail and/or recorded messages on the emergency telephone line, 860-486-3768.

In a survey after the test taken by 2,719 people, 88 percent said they were notified by one or more forms of Alert communication within 10 minutes. Most received the text message first.

The text messages were received by 99 percent of the registered telephones within three minutes of the message being sent, according to Rave, the University’s text message provider.

“We are very pleased with the outcome of the test,” says Barry Feldman, vice president and chief operating officer. “It demonstrates that all of the components are working in the way we anticipated and that we are able to get notice of an emergency out to the community quickly.”

The redundant systems are designed so that most people will be notified by one or more components of the system, he said.

The components will be tested each semester in the future. Tests of the Alert Notification Systems at the regional campuses are also being scheduled.




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