Texas A&M University-Kingsville

University to Test Emergency Broadcast Notification System April 29-30

KINGSVILLE - April 21, 2009

Contact: Julie Navejar
julie.navejar@tamuk.edu or 361.593.2590

System testing including sirens, voice announcements may be heard off campus

Crews at Texas A&M University-Kingsville will be testing the new Emergency Broadcast Notification System throughout the day Wednesday and Thursday, April 29-30. The outdoor loudspeakers are located on the roof of the Jernigan Library and may be heard off campus.

“Because the system is newly installed, testing will continue until the crew has properly calibrated the outdoor loudspeakers to the proper volume,” said Deck Shaver, director of risk and compliance. “We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause students and staff as well as our off-campus neighbors.”

The new system, provided by BRG Precision Products, allows for voice notification, sirens and other alerts in the case of an emergency. Four loudspeakers will be located on the library roof, each pointing a different direction. Because the campus area is not perfectly square, the speakers may have to be calibrated differently to try to keep the resulting future tests and announcements within the university borders, Shaver said.

Once initial testing is complete, the emergency notification system will be tested at noon every Friday. Broadcasts will be made in English and Spanish and tests will specifically be noted as tests.

In addition to the outdoor devices the university has purchased 11 wireless message boards that accompany the system. Two will be located in the Memorial Student Union Building, and one each in the Steinke Physical Education Center, Life Services and Wellness, College Hall, Eckhardt Hall and Lynch, Lewis, Bishop, Turner and Martin Residence Halls.

The indoor message boards will work in tandem with the outdoor notification function with messages in English and Spanish.

University officials will choose specific pre-recorded emergency messages, but also will have the capability of making live announcement should the need arise, Shaver said.

This combination of outdoor and indoor emergency notification is considered a Tier One system, or the most immediate way of reaching the campus community in case of an emergency.

The university uses Connect-ED as the Tier Two emergency notification system. Connect-ED allows the university to send text messages and emails and make telephone calls with recorded messages to the university community in case of an emergency. The system allows for up to six telephone numbers and two email addresses per person, so students may include parents in the emergency notification system.

For more information on the testing and use of the emergency notification system, please call 361-593-4131.

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