Thursday, June 25, 2009

SMU Campus Alert

Speaking of SMU...this just happened! At least we know our campus alert system works!!
SMU emergency alert creates panic for students on campus 10:52 AM CT

10:54 AM CDT on Thursday, June 25, 2009
From Staff Reports
A gas leak at SMU this morning created panic for some students and staffers after school officials sent out an emergency alert that requested those on campus to remain indoors but failed to explain why.

Shortly before 10 a.m., students and staffers began receiving messages that read: "There is an emergency on campus. Please shelter in the nearest building now. Do not go outside. Will update."

Russ Aaron was working with other students on a project when they received the alert. Aaron said he and others turned the lights off to the classroom and huddled in a corner, thinking there had been a campus shooting.

"I am still kind of shaken up a little bit," he said after learning that the alarm was for a gas leak.

About a half hour later, a second message said: "Gas leak @ Airline & Binkley Garage. Avoid SE area of campus please."

People in nearby buildings were evacuated to other locations as a precaution, said SMU spokesman Kent Best.

Atmos Energy was on scene and the gas leak was contained shortly before 11 a.m., the school said. No injuries were reported.

SMU spokeswoman Patti LaSalle said, "The emergency management folks felt it was best to send out an anouncement so that everybody would stay in their buildings and not be wandering on that side of campus."

On the social networking Web site Twitter, students quickly spread the message that the emergency was a gas leak.

One Twitterer, Kimosterberg, wrote this: "SMU is on lock-down due to a gas leak. Way to freak me out school."

1 comment:

Sarah said...

I have to agree about the emergency alert system being a little overkill. I was freaking out a little bit for everyone there and I'm 1200 miles away. I feel like the emergency alert system should really only be used in life threatening emergencies or it will turn into the emergency alert system that cried wolf.