If you hear a siren on The University of New Mexico campus Tuesday morning, Feb. 2, don’t be alarmed, but do pay attention. UNM is conducting a test of its emergency notification systems.
The test, which occurs at 11:02 a.m., will include all parts of the University's warning systems including sirens, e-mail, text messaging, social media page updates and UNM website notifications.
"The purpose of the test is to familiarize everyone with all of the various ways we notify the campus of an emergency or advisory,” said University Emergency Manager Byron Piatt. “It’s important to check your phones, computers and other devices during and after the test to make sure you receive the alert. Also, take a few minutes to review how you would respond in a real emergency.”
The test, which is done at the beginning of each semester, also gives campus first responders an opportunity to activate the various systems as part of their routine training.
How it works
Emails and texts will go out prior to the test to notify the campus that is it coming. At 11:02 a.m. Tuesday, the sirens will sound for approximately one minute. A pause will follow and then an "all clear" siren will sound for another minute.
At the same time, text and e-mail messages will be sent via LoboAlerts, and alerts will appear on websites and social media sites.
For a siren sample, click on the respective link
Listen to the Emergency Alert
In addition to LoboAlerts that warn of an immediate emergency, UNM is also now issuing LoboAdvisories to notify of a potentially dangerous situation on campus. Under a federal campus safety law known as the Clery Act, Universities are required to issue these emergency notifications and timely warnings. UNM recently moved to distinguish between the two types of notices by adding the LoboAdvisory designation.
“LoboAdvisories are what the Clery Act would term a timely warning,” said UNM’s new Clery Compliance Officer Rob Burford. “It requires us to alert the campus about certain crimes in a manner that is timely and that will aid in the prevention of similar crimes. This is why we’ve issued LoboAdvisories regarding recent gropings on or near campus. One of those notices helped lead police to a suspect.”
To prepare for the test, all UNM and UNMH staff, faculty, affiliates and registered students are asked to log into the LoboAlerts site and update their emergency notification information and preferences. The LoboAlerts system can store and contact up to three cell phones and three e-mail addresses per person.
Piatt also suggests that individuals add the numbers 26787 and 67283 to their address books as LoboAlerts. The numbers are the common short codes used by the system to send the messages.
“It is helpful to see a text message coming from "LoboAlerts" rather than some unknown number,” he said.
On average, text messages are delivered 10 times faster than the e-mail messages. However, the timeliness of text message receipt can vary based upon type of phone, carrier, location or battery strength.
In an actual incident
In an actual incident, individuals should seek shelter in the nearest building and look for additional information. If you receive a LoboAlerts text or e-mail, you are asked to follow any instructions it contains and to share the information with people around you, in case others have not received their alerts yet.
LoboAlerts is also the primary system utilized by the University in the event of inclement weather.
Non-UNM persons who work on campus, live in nearby communities, or otherwise have an interest in receiving emergency notifications can also receive LoboAlerts.
For more information about these alerts and other safety measures, visit: UNM Campus Safety.