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Emergency Articles

In an ongoing effort to improve pedestrian safety, the University has installed a new kind of crosswalk light warning system, called Rapid Flashing Beacons (RFBs), at 16 crosswalks in and around the University.  RFBs allow UVA to put more lights in more locations across Grounds in ways that are less invasive, easier to maintain – and most important – more reliable than previous systems. 

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University of Virginia Dean of Students Allen Groves is known and loved by students for giving high fives around Grounds. Dean Groves also knows that the same hands that give you a high five, however, could also help save a life. 

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Commonly known as "blue light phones," there are more than 475 emergency phones located across Grounds. These phones are intended for emergency use and provide direct contact to the police department. If you feel threatened, in danger, are experiencing an emergency, or otherwise need police or security assistance, press or pick up the nearest emergency phone.

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Four years ago, Virginians were surprised to find themselves at the epicenter of a 5.8  magnitude earthquake. Many residents had never felt an earthquake and were unsure how to respond. In an effort to recall that earthquakes can occur in Charlottesville and to practice the safest responses, U.Va. will join a multi-state simultaneous drill called the "Great Southeast ShakeOut" on Oct 15.  

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As part of Fire Prevention month, the University helped promote fire safety in the “Stop and Knock” campaign on October 14–15.   The campaign targeted students who live in off Grounds rental housing in neighborhoods close to the University, including Venable, Lewis Mountain, and the JPA/Fontaine corridor.  The campaign was initiated in 2013 following a fire on Wertland Street ignited by an upholstered sofa on the front porch.

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The time of crisis is not the time to plan. Emergencies can happen unexpectedly, and everyone needs to be prepared to act in an emergency. Please TAKE 3 minutes as you begin this semester to consider these three things:

  • How you will be notified in an emergency
  • Where you would evacuate from class or residence
  • Where you would shelter in place in class or residence
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In the event of an emergency, multiple communication methods will be deployed to alert the community to an emergency as quickly as possible.  You may be notified of an emergency in several ways.

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The Alertus Desktop Notification software provides a way for public safety personnel to relay important emergency alert information to UVa faculty, staff, and students.

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The next tax-free emergency preparedness equipment period is May 25-31, 2014.  Items designated as hurricane preparedness equipment will be exempt from state sales tax.   For details, visit the Hurricane Preparedness Equipment Holiday page.

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Safety of our people is the highest priority. Knowing what to do in an emergency is critical to your safety:

  • If you discover an emergency situation, call 911. Remain calm and use common sense.

  • Depending on the situation, evacuate or shelter in place. To determine your safest response, see the Emergency Procedures Poster.  

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