SHU: Are We Prepared for a Disaster?

SHU: Are We Prepared for a Disaster?

Over the past month or so, it seems like all we see on the news is disaster after disaster ravaging the country.

In times like these it makes you wonder, “What would we do if this ever happened to us?” It is important to know that Siena Heights is a certified StormReady university, which means there are appropriate action plans and proper structures in place.

Senior Department of Public Safety Officer Mike Birt said the University has standard policies for emergencies such as fires, tornadoes and other natural disasters, and they are practiced on a regular basis across campus. Another key part of being storm-ready is the structures and signage across campus, making sure all buildings are up to code, and communicating policies to students and faculty in a timely manner.

As most of you know, Michigan does see its fair share of tornadoes and damaging storms. But in Adrian, the most common issue is during the winter. According to records, over the past five years we have received 12-plus inches of snow at one time on multiple occasions, not to mention crippling temperatures that have burst pipes and caused other problems. I remember twice during my four years here being sent home or evacuated do to issues such as pipe breaks or power issues. The school has always taken care of its students and promptly fixed the issues.

Thankfully we will never have to deal with 48 inches of rainwater, 175 MPH winds, or any sort of tropical storm (knock on wood), but it is good to know that we are in the right hands when it comes to weather occurrences that could strike.

DPS Chief Public Safety Officer Cindy Birdwell said, “Siena Heights University has policies in place that will ensure the safety of this community in an event of a natural disaster.”

I was originally skeptical about how prepared Siena Heights really is, but after reviewing documents and talking to several of the top public safety officers, I think we can all rest easy at night, knowing that they have it covered.

If you are curious about being a storm ready university you can check out and apply for certification for a home, school, business, or any other facility.

It never hurts to be prepared!