The Office of Emergency Management will be tabling at various locations around campus to provide preparedness tips and information on campus this week to help you be prepared in an emergency situation. One of the best ways you can make sure you are individually prepared and help build a resilient campus is to participate in this week’s activities and to take note of the information provided. Stop by our table to participate in our scavenger hunt, to win prizes, to grab a snack and to learn more about the tools available to protect yourself in the event of an emergency!
Events This week
February 27 – Lightning/Thunderstorm Safety: The International House, 2:30 – 5 PM
February 28 – Flooding Safety: Hodges Library, 12:45 – 3:30 PM
March 1 – Fire Safety: Hodges Library, 9:30 – 12 PM
March 2 – Tornado Safety: The scavenger hunt ends! Pedestrian Walkway, 9:30 – 12 PM
March 5 – Earthquake Safety: The scavenger hunt begins! Pedestrian Walkway, 12:45 – 3:30 PM
The campus makes every effort to intervene before a person may turn violent, but we continue to see in our society that prevention is not always possible. UTPD and local law enforcement train regularly for these terrible crimes; but individuals need to know what to do before police arrive.
There is information and training available for the campus community. Visit the Active Shooter page on the safety website and watch the videos. Training and drills are available for student groups and departments. You can request training through UTPD’s Community Relations Unit by filling out this form.
The Office of Emergency Management has been encouraging the campus community to improve their personal preparedness as part of nation emergency preparedness month. This email provides you with quick access to the resources available to you as a member of the campus community.
New this year: bleeding control kits in AED cases
- A comprehensive website http://safety.utk.edu/ep that includes:
- Individual protective actions
- Information on campus notification
- Links to campus planning documents and guides
- Building posters that provide quick references to emergency information
Folder Faculty Guide Bookmark
Students, faculty, and staff are eligible to receive UT Alert text messages by signing into their UT Alert account using their NetID and password.
If you have family or friends visiting you on campus, they can now sign up to receive alerts while they are here. This new capability allows people on campus who are visiting for fun or business or who are attending an event to temporarily sign up for alerts by texting the keyword VisitorsUTAlert to 67283.
They will automatically be signed up to receive text alerts for 30 days or they can opt out at any time by replying STOP to the confirmation text. Learn more about the campus mass notification.
Be Aware. Make a plan. Respond!
Personal preparedness is as important to our campus resiliency as all of the planning and training conducted by the Office of Emergency Management. Here are some easy steps to help you be prepared during an emergency:
- Know what to do in different types of emergencies: http://safety.utk.edu/ep
- Be aware of your surroundings: Locate building emergency posters, shelters and exits.
- Stay informed and update your mobile number in your UT Alert account.
- Make a communications plan:
- Identify your emergency contact in case of emergency (ICE).
- Keep phone numbers handy.
- Predetermine a local and out-of-area location to reunite with family and friends.
- Text instead of calling when cell phone service is overloaded.
- Use the Reconnect Site during a major disaster.
- Download the Guardian App and fill out the safety profile.
- Have a to-go bag ready with at least some water, medications, hygiene items, clothes, cell phone and charger, IDs, flashlight, etc. View a more complete list here.
Want to learn more? Take the online emergency preparedness training.
Public safety professionals continue to work to make our campus and events safe. However, the best way to stop crime is to have an engaged community that pays attention to their surroundings. If you see something that doesn’t feel right, say something by reporting it. Trust your instincts and share information that seems suspicious or just out of place. Call UTPD or text a tip using Guardian.
Some indicators to look for:
- Individuals in places they don’t belong, acting suspiciously, avoiding eye contact, or departing quickly when seen or approached
- People moving against the flow or loitering for no apparent reason
- Overdressed for the type of weather
- Unusual interest and asking probing questions
- A strong odor coming from a bag or vehicle
- An overloaded vehicle or fluid leaking from a vehicle, other than the engine or gas tank
If you are concerned about the behavior of someone you know, call 974-HELP (4357) for students or 946-CARE (2273) for faculty and staff. These resources work to provide UT community members with the assistance they need during times of crisis.
One of the cornerstones of our campus culture is to volunteer and give of ourselves to make a contribution to our community. Tennessee has deployed its citizens again and there are more relief efforts underway than can be counted. A fitting tribute to our state that rallied volunteers who risked everything to fight beside another group of Texans in dire straights at the Alamo.
One of the best things you can do to help survivors in any disaster, including Hurricane Harvey, is to provide assistance that is most helpful to them. Here is a list of things best practices to consider.
- Donate money not goods: Money can be used by relief organizations to directly meet the needs of survivors. Often goods create an additional burden on already strained resources, don’t match the need, and go to waste.
- Pick a charity you trust: Unfortunately some people try to take advantage of the generous outpouring of support. Do some research to make sure your donation is going to be used how you intended. Generally, national organizations have a long track record and will be operating in the disaster.
- Do NOT self-deploy: The desire to load up a van and go to help can be hard to resist. At worst, you could end up being another victim of the disaster or need rescuing yourself. More often, you will be unable to reach the people in need and your efforts will be ineffective.
- Volunteer with an established nonprofit: Many organizations plan and train to safely and effectively deploy volunteers to disaster areas and will be working with local officials to coordinate their activities. The East Tennessee Chapter of the American Red Cross is taking volunteers right now to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey.
NWS has issued a tornado watch which includes campus. This means conditions are such that a tornado could develop. No action is needed at this time, but continue to monitor the weather. The watch expires at 7pm.
The National Weather Service is tracking strong thunderstorms along a line extending from Madisonville to 7 miles SE of Wildwood Lake. High winds, lightning, and localized flooding is occurring with this storm.
Today is Giving Tuesday, and we suddenly have an urgent need in our own backyard. Overnight, thousands of people were evacuated from their homes in Sevier County as fire threatened Gatlinburg and the surrounding area. A campus effort is underway to collect donations of snacks, bottled water, and toiletries to assist relief efforts. Read more.