University of Northern Iowa

Emergency Shelters - Department of Residents Buildings

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Severe Winds

In the case of severe winds, the hall office and / or Coordinator will be notified by the DOR Facilities Secretary. After hours communication of severe winds will come from the University Police.

The RLC on Call will need to inform each RA on Call of the weather reports.

Use intercoms/megaphones to ask students to close windows to avoid damage.

It is important to encourage residents to close and stay clear of windows with assistance from hall staff members. Damage from high winds may include bro- ken glass, blowing debris, and structural damage such as roof materials.

If any serious structural damage should occur, contact the Director of Residence Facilities immediately to start damage assessment processes.

For minor damages such as broken windows, cover window with cardboard and report the broken window to the Director of Residence Facilities.

Any student property damage should be referred to the student's insurance provider. The University is not responsible for loss or damage to personal property.

Tornado Evacuation Locations

Building Tornado Evacuation Location
Bender/Dancer Floors 2-6 in the hallways—away from glass / not the catwalk
Campbell Ground floor hallways—away from windows & glass
Hagemann Ground floor hallways/laundry room (not rec room)
Lawther Ground floor hallways—away from windows & glass
Noehren Basement hallways/under stairs/laundry rm/basement storage rm 31 (not rec room)
Panther Village Each apartment bathroom and Basement
Rider Ground floor/basement hallways, laundry rm, storage rm 29/31 (not rec room)
ROTH Storage hallway, room 29
Shull Ground floor hallways/laundry (not rec/study room)
University Apartments Go to lower floor of apartment complex or Jennings Courts: ROTH Complex (door #6) Hillside Courts: Business Community Services bldg

In cases of a tornado watch, warning, or other severe weather, Coordinators should watch weather reports closely and as quickly as possible, move residents to shelter.

Tornado Watch: Tornado is possible. Staff should continually monitor weather and alerts. Shelter does not need to be taken until weather worsens, usually indicated by a tornado warning.

Tornado Warning: Tornado has been sighted and is moving towards the warned area. Students should seek shelter immediately (shelter locations on following page). It is not mandatory for students to seek shelter, but they should be strongly encouraged to do so.


Residents and staff will be alerted of tornado warnings by a prolonged blast from a siren located on the campus and/or by University Police. These sirens are activated by the Black Hawk County Emergency Management Office (291-4373). The warning siren is tested the 1st Wednesday of each month at 11:00 am. This may change if a holiday falls on the Wednesday. It is then tested the next day at 11:00 am. Staff should provide as much assistance as possible in alerting residents to seek shelter.

Evacuation Procedures to communicate to staff and residents:

  • Leave your room
  • Close and lock room door
  • Move to an interior corridor on a lower floor (especially residents in high rises)
  • Sit on floor away from glass and doors
  • Stay seated until the warning is over

University Police will notify the Department of Residence whenever they are alerted to a tornado warning or other severe weather. During office hours, the Department of Residence will disseminate the information to the halls. After hours, the RLC on call cell phone will be called. The RLC on Call will then notify all residence halls of severe weather reports. (Note: UNI's out- door alarm system may also sound.)

Each hall is also equipped with a weather radio for use during these times. Coordinators should use it to gather weather information while students are in a safe area. Weather radios will be monitored in the hall office when the office is open. During peak weather seasons the RA on Call must carry the weather radio to his or her room and monitor the radio during the night-time hours. More information about when these peak seasons are upon us will be provided throughout the year.

In the event that a tornado touches down on campus, destroying residence halls, the Director of Residence Life will work with hall staff to determine appropriate resources and action.