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Sources: Steve Galitzer, 785-532-5856, galitz@k-state.edu; and
Dalton Henry, dhenry@k-state.edu
Web site: http://www.k-state.edu/safety/alerts
News release prepared by: Katie Mayes, 785-532-6415, kmayes@k-state.edu

Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2009

K-STATE'S EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SYSTEM TO UNDERGO ROUTINE TEST OCT. 14

MANHATTAN -- At about 10 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, Kansas State University will conduct a test of K-State Alerts, the university's emergency notification system.

Emergency notification channels to be tested are: text messaging, automated phone calls, e-mail to all K-State accounts and the new alert beacons installed this summer in Eisenhower Hall and behind the front desks of residence halls on the Manhattan campus.

K-State Alerts is used when a dangerous condition exists on campus, such as an active shooter or university closure due to severe weather.

Steve Galitzer, director of environmental health and safety at K-State, said that K-State Alerts is tested twice a year to ensure proper operation during an actual emergency.

During the test, text messages, automated phone calls and e-mails will be sent out. In addition, the new wall-mounted alert beacons will emit a loud siren, flash strobe lights and provide digital scrolling text for two full minutes. They cannot be turned off during the test.

Dalton Henry, student body president and K-State senior in agricultural communications and journalism and agricultural economics, Randolph, said that the 18 new alert beacons are another critical step toward keeping K-State students and employees safe.

"This is the kind of project that looks so small, but in the event of an emergency these beacons have the ability to make a huge difference in our ability to respond and take action," he said.

K-State also chose to partner with Rave Wireless recently as the new provider for many of the emergency notification services that fall under K-State Alerts.

To sign up to receive emergency notifications by text message or an automated phone call, students, faculty and staff with active K-State eIDs must enroll in K-State Alerts through the eProfile system. Eligible K-Staters can add contact information of parents, children and spouses when they sign up. The eProfile system is available at: http://eid.k-state.edu

For text messages, factors such as service provider, coverage area and total load on local communication towers can impact when and if users receive text messages.

Those who already subscribe to text message and automated phone calls won't need to re-register, but officials recommend checking the Web site to make sure K-State has current contact information.

Individuals who sign up for the service and do not receive the test alert or any other alerts should contact K-State's IT Help Desk at 800-865-6143 or 785-532-7722. Users are responsible for any messaging charges from their phone service providers and for keeping their emergency contact information up to date.

More information is available at http://www.k-state.edu/safety/alerts