Emergency Notification System Spring Test Set for Feb. 19

The campus will conduct a test of the UMass Amherst Alerts Emergency Notification System (ENS) on Wednesday, Feb.19 after 12:10 p.m., according to Jeff Hescock, executive director of environmental health and safety and emergency management.

This test is part of the university’s continuing effort to test, evaluate and improve its ability to provide timely and effective emergency notification and warnings during a campus emergency. The ENS test will include the UMass Amherst Alerts emergency text messaging, broadcast email and outdoor warning sirens. Visit the Emergency Management website for information on how to sign up for the UMass Amherst Alerts emergency text messaging system.

UMass Emergency alerts (text messages and e-mails) are designed to work in tandem with the outdoor warning sirens. When a siren sounds, check your phone for a text message update on the emergency.

The university has several services and resources available to the campus community during emergencies including an active threat training video. Components of both personal and campus preparedness include the following:

  • Please take a few minutes to watch the UMass Amherst Active Threat Training video to familiarize yourself with the guidance offered for individual decision making during an active threat emergency. 
  • Emergencies are highly unpredictable and your response may depend on the exact circumstances and your location on campus. You should familiarize yourself with the Emergency Response Handbook and Emergency Procedures Posters, which provide guidance to the campus community to prepare for and react safely in the event of an emergency. They can be downloaded at https://www.umass.edu/emergency/emergency-procedures.
  • UMass Police Department offers active-threat training on request. This 90-minute program is available to students, staff and faculty. You can find details at http://www.umass.edu/umpd/active-threat-program.
  • UMass Police also conduct ongoing active-threat training with their staff to improve on their techniques to protect the public during an active threat. 
  • UMass Amherst also has a process for helping individual students in distress through its Assessment and Care Team (ACT). The team focuses on early intervention with students who may pose a threat to themselves or others, taking action to help the individual and protect campus safety. Representatives from key student support offices meet weekly to support students in crisis. There is a parallel panel for faculty and staff. For more information, visit http://www.umass.edu/studentlife/faculty-staff.
  • UMass produces “The Maroon Folder,” a guide with resources for faculty and staff to help recognize, respond to, refer and report any student who appears to be in crisis. It also contains a lengthy list of resources to deal with emergencies, follow-up and support training. The folder also lists state, federal and university policies that guide campus events and behaviors. Find it at https://www.umass.edu/umatter/sites/default/files/Maroon_folder2019.pdf.