Roger Williams University has completed the installation of an outdoor Emergency Siren Warning System (ESWS) on its main campus. The system consists of four strategically placed sirens that will be used to warn the University community in the event of a potentially life-threatening emergency.
If a potentially life threatening emergency is identified where a campus-wide ESWS activation is deemed necessary, the Department of Public Safety will activate the system. The activation will consist of an alert tone generally followed by a voice message regarding the nature of the emergency. Additionally, the University will use the RWU website and Connect-Ed notification system to provide further information via Internet, telephone, e-mail and text messaging.
Since the tragic shooting events at Virginia Tech University, countless colleges and universities have installed outdoor mass notification systems. Locally, Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design have installed such systems. Nationwide, schools such as the University of New Hampshire, Cornell University, Central Connecticut State University, James Madison University, the University of Central Florida, the University of Texas and the University of Southern California (just to name a few) have also installed similar outdoor warning systems.
Log onto the ESWS website
Listen to an audio clip for a simulation of the siren sound at mms://streamer.rwu.edu/training/chemical%20spill.mp3.
Sirens will be tested at least annually to ensure operational readiness. Test schedules will be announced in advance and posted on the RWU ESWS website.
The testing associated with the installation of the ESWS will occur during the week of January 19-23, 2009, during daylight hours.
You should continue your regular activities during a test. You do not need to take any special actions during a test.
Students, faculty, staff and visitors who hear the siren should seek shelter by immediately going inside a nearby building unless directed otherwise via emergency public address message. The system will be used to alert people to go indoors / shelter-in-place and seek additional information by doing the following:
Examples of emergencies where the ESWS would likely be activated include:
Although the sirens will be loudest within the limits of campus, close proximity neighbors will be able to hear the warning system. For this reason, the University has corresponded with surrounding neighbors of the main campus to ensure that people are aware of the new warning system and have an opportunity to ask questions.
Depending upon where you are located within a particular University building, you may or may not be able to hear the siren and/or the broadcast announcement. You should remain indoors and await a communication on your cell phone via Connect-Ed.
If you have any questions or comments regarding Roger Williams University’s ESWS, please contact ESWS@rwu.edu or contact the Department of Environmental Health & Safety at x3189.