S164 StormReady Initiative: Improvements in Emergency Preparedness, Training, and Education at Millersville University

Sunday, 6 January 2013
Exhibit Hall 3 (Austin Convention Center)
Daniel Berndt, Millersville University, Millersville, PA; and A. M. Fitch, C. Bamper, and S. Yalda

In recent years, Millersville University and the surrounding community have experienced numerous situations in which severe weather and other unforeseen hazards have affected the area. Such events as a gas leak and subsequent explosion, several flooding events, and even a weak tornado touchdown on the outskirts are among the hazards experienced near Millersville. In addition, it has become apparent that many students are not properly educated about the hazards of severe weather and other potential dangers. Moreover, many individuals have expressed a lack of proper skill in interpreting the National Weather Service hazard messages, and severe weather warnings. We desire to improve the preparedness of students and faculty for hazardous weather events and other dangerous situations. The objective begins with a survey to gather information about the level of emergency preparedness among members of Millersville University community. The survey includes several questions designed to diagnose the effectiveness of the MU Alert Notification System. The information will be used to better inform and better prepare individuals for an approaching hazard. In addition, the information will be used to identify the level of emergency preparedness among all university members. It will aid in improving and better targeting preparedness training to university staff. Moreover, the results will help in discovering what emergency information alert services are most effective for the majority of individuals and identifying what areas need to be improved. Lastly, we hope to significantly elevate the level of awareness among university members for emergency warnings and response procedures. The scope of the project will hopefully span campus and the Millersville Borough.
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