Baylor to Test Outdoor Tornado Sirens at 10 a.m. June 7, 2024

Baylor joins city and county partners in coordinated siren test on first Friday of the month

June 6, 2024
Baylor Alert tornado sirens

Media Contact: Baylor University Media and Public Relations, 254-710-1961 
Follow us on Twitter: @BaylorUMedia 

WACO, Texas (June 6, 2024) – Baylor University will join City of Waco and McLennan County partners – in cooperation with the Waco/McLennan County Office of Emergency Management – to conduct a regular test of its Outdoor Warning System (tornado sirens) at 10 a.m. Friday, [Month, day]. The University’s testing period will be 10 to 11 a.m. 

The first Friday of each month, Baylor joins city and county partners for regular joint testing of tornado sirens at 10 a.m. on the first Friday of each month. If there is a weather-related emergency – including a tornado warning where a tornado is imminent – Baylor, the city and county will activate their outdoor sirens to alert the public to take action to stay safe. If there is rain in the forecast or skies are cloudy, the monthly siren test will be postponed to Friday, [Month, day]. 

“During the summer storm season, Central Texas at times may experience severe weather, including tornadoes,” said George Nunez, director of emergency management at Baylor. “It is important for students, faculty, staff and visitors to be familiar with the Baylor Alert emergency notification system and tornado preparedness guidance for severe weather, particularly if the National Weather Service issues a Tornado Watch or Tornado Warning.” 

What to expect from tests of outdoor sirens  

On the morning of the [Month, day] test, the Baylor Emergency Management team will send a Baylor Alert email from baylor@email.getrave.com at 9:30 a.m. and a Baylor Alert text message at 9:45 a.m. to members of the Baylor community alerting them of the outdoor tornado siren testing. The text message will come from one of the following short codes: 226787, 67283, 78015 and 77295. 

At 10 a.m., the outdoor tornado siren testing will begin with a test voice announcement, followed by the outdoor siren test that will last about 60 seconds. 

Feedback about the Outdoor Warning System testing can be directed to the Baylor Office of Emergency Management at Emergency_Management@baylor.edu or 254-710-2836 (BUEM). 

More information about emergency preparedness, including safety procedures in the event of a tornado warning, and the Baylor Alert notification system is available at on the Baylor Office of Emergency Management website

How to sign up for Baylor Alert  

Baylor University's Department of Public Safety and its emergency management team use the multi-tiered Baylor Alert emergency notification system to share important information and instructions for students, faculty, staff and visitors for all kinds of hazards, from severe weather to other dangerous situations. The Baylor Alert system includes: 

  • Outdoor and indoor loudspeakers,  
  • Baylor Alert text and email messages,  
  • Notices on Baylor’s website and official social media channels Facebook, X (Twitter) and Instagram and 
  • The Baylor Information Line recording at 254-710-4411. 

Baylor students may enter/update their Baylor Alert contact information by logging on to BearWeb. Employees can enter/update their emergency contact information through the Ignite system. In addition, parents, visitors, contractors and other individuals can opt-in to receive Baylor Alert text messages by using one of following options: 

  • Short-term visitors (1-3 days) can text Baylor1845 to 226787. *Note, subscriptions automatically expire after three days. 
  • Long-term visitors (weeks, months, semester, etc.) can text Baylor76798 to 226787. *Note, subscriptions do not automatically expire. Users must opt-out to stop receiving notifications. 

Additional Resources  

Frequently Asked Questions about City of Waco Emergency Management Warning Sirens are available on the McLennan County website. Additional information about City of Waco Emergency Management is available on the City of Waco website

Safety Procedures  

Indoors 

  • Seek shelter immediately on a ground floor, in an interior room. 
  • Severe Weather Assembly Areas in each Baylor Waco campus building are identified on Building Emergency Plan maps throughout each building and available via an online map
  • Do not use elevators. 
  • Stay away from windows, doors and outside walls. 
  • Avoid wide-span roof areas such as auditorium, gymnasium, dining hall and large hallways. 

Residence Halls 

  • Residence Hall Directors and available staff will gather all residents to the Severe Weather Assembly Areas (identified on Building Emergency Plan maps throughout the facility). 
  • Residents should bring blankets for protection from debris. 
  • Remain in the Severe Weather Assembly Areas until the tornado passes, and an All Clear is issued via Baylor Alert. 

Outdoors  

  • Seek indoor shelter, if possible. 
  • Parked motor vehicles are unsafe. 
  • If indoor shelter is not available and there is not time for escape, lie flat in a ditch or low spot. 
  • If you are on a flat ground and are caught in the path of a tornado, always move at right angles to its path. 

Individuals with mobility/impairments or physical disabilities: 

Supervisory personnel and course instructors are responsible for identifying and escorting individuals with mobility impairments or physical disabilities located in their offices/facilities or classrooms to safety in the event of a tornado warning. 

The elevators may be used to transport individuals with mobility impairments or physical disabilities and their escorts to a safer location. Visually impaired and hearing-impaired individuals may be escorted down the stairs but may require assistance in moving in crowded staircases and in finding a safer location.  

In the event of a power failure, individuals who are unable to use the stairs and their escorts should move to an interior location without windows and call the Baylor University Police Department at 254-710-2222 who will notify the appropriate emergency personnel with the location.  

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY 

The Baylor University Department of Public Safety serves as an umbrella department for the Baylor University Police Department, emergency management, global safety and security, technical security and parking and transportation. BUDPS is set on providing students, faculty and alumni with excellent security and safety through instant notification systems, extensive surveillance cameras and highly trained staff. 

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY 

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.