News Release

News and Public Information Office
Glos Center
Miami University
Oxford, Ohio 45056
(513) 529-7592
(513) 529-1950 fax
newsinfo@miamioh.edu

Successful emergency communication test held

11/15/2011

Miami University's fall test of its emergency alert systems was a success, based on survey responses received following the 1:30 p.m. test Wednesday, Sept. 28.

Representatives of the Institutional Response Team (IRT) sent test messages via the following methods:

  • Miami’s Emergency Text Messaging System, with email option
  • An all-Miami email via rapid email
  • The Miami University home page and MyMiami portal
  • The voice and display-based emergency notification feature of the VoIP telephones.
  • The digital signage in the Farmer School of Business, Hoyt Hall, HDRBS locations, the BEST Library in Laws Hall, on the regional campuses and VOA.
  • MUTV channel 42

This year all alerts were sent from the Butler Co. Emergency Management Agency’s EOC (Emergency Operations Center) on Princeton Rd. in Hamilton in order to gauge our ability to send alerts from outside the Oxford campus. Use of this site proved as successful as previous on-campus and multi-site tests.

About 27 percent of recipients responded to a survey sent to a random list of 5,000 staff, faculty and students. More than 75 percent of survey responders said they had received at least one alert by 1:33 p.m. This number jumps to 83 percent by 1:35 p.m. About 14 percent reported to have received their first alert after 1:40 p.m. This can be attributed to many factors, including but not limited to: a phone that is not on at the time of the test, poor cell phone reception, not being near a computer or phone during the test.

Emails reached 94 percent of people, with most of the other six percent not having checked junk filters or being away from their computers. Text messages were delivered to 98.6 percent of phones, with failed deliveries due to a variety of factors. The message was displayed on the myMiami portal, the Miami home page and the Miami police website. The test alert was not displayed on the new regional campuses website but has since been tested with success.

Of those who were in a campus building, more than 45 percent reported to have heard or seen an alert via VoIP on a campus phone. Digital signs displayed the test message for 10 minutes and just over 5 percent of responders reported to have seen those messages. Fewer than one percent of the survey responders stated that they had seen the alert on MUTV Channel 42.

The university has used the emergency alert system to communicate in severe weather situations, but may use it for other types of emergencies as well. If you are not registered yet to receive text or email messages through the e2Campus system, you can do so starting at www.muohio.edu/police.

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