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Community members encouraged to update VT Alerts notification preferences prior to Feb. 2 test

January 19, 2016

BLACKSBURG — Virginia Tech will conduct a full-scale test of its VT Alerts system Tuesday, Feb. 2, on the Blacksburg campus as well as university facilities located in six regions across Virginia.

The test will occur between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.

When a VT Alert is sent out, the information is automatically communicated with the community via campus sirens, electronic message boards, emails to vt.edu addresses, and social media updates. Individuals may also subscribe to receive the information via a VT Phone Alert or VT Desktop Alert by visiting the VT Alerts website.

Those with a Virginia Tech PID are eligible to subscribe to VT Phone Alerts, which can be sent to a cell (by voice or text message), home, and/or office phone, or a non-Virginia Tech email address. Subscribers are able to choose up to three preferred contact methods for VT Phone Alerts. However, individuals should make sure to provide only their current and direct contact information.

All community members should expect to receive duplicate messages. This redundancy is intentional to ensure important information reaches as many people as possible in the shortest amount of time.

Students and employees are strongly encouraged to log in to the VT Phone Alerts website to update notification preferences and verify contact information prior to the Feb. 2 test.

While in the system, users can also choose up to three regions for which to receive notification. The available regions include:

  • Blacksburg (Virginia Tech main campus, Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine);
  • National Capital Region (Northern Virginia Center in Falls Church, Va.; Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center in Leesburg, Va.; Middleburg Agricultural Research and Extension Center; Alexandria Center; Occoquan Watershed Monitoring Laboratory in Manassas, Va.; Virginia Tech Research Center – Arlington);
  • Richmond (Virginia Tech Richmond Center);
  • Hampton Roads (Virginia Tech Hampton Roads Center, Virginia Beach; Virginia Tech Hampton Roads Center, Newport News);
  • Roanoke (Roanoke Higher Education Center, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute);
  • Abingdon (Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center); and
  • Danville (Institute for Advanced Learning and Research).

Individuals who have subscribed but do not receive a phone alert during the test should first log in to verify that their record is correct and then contact 4Help at 540-231-HELP (4357).

In the event of an actual emergency, individuals must be aware of their surroundings and take immediate responsibility for their personal safety and security. Initial VT Alerts messages will provide basic information on the nature and location of the emergency, as well as instructions for what to do. Subsequent VT Alerts messages or first responders will provide additional instructions and updates about the incident until the all clear is given. Detailed information, when available, will be posted to the university homepage.

Visit the VT Alerts website for more information or to sign up.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.

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