Locals near the campus of the College of William & Mary on Wednesday afternoon should be prepared to hear sirens for a short period of time.
The college is planning to test its emergency notification system at 12:15 p.m. Wednesday.
Composed of a 120-decibel siren system and a mass-notification messaging system, the emergency notification system is an important part of the school’s safety protocols.
William & Mary conducts tests of its emergency notification system each semester.
“It’s to make sure everything is operating properly, but so people are aware that this is what the siren sounds like,” said Suzanne Seurattan, the college’s director of news and media.
In the case of a real emergency, the siren will sound and students and faculty will receive email, text or voicemail notifications providing more information about the situation.
On Wednesday, William & Mary will test the siren for a total of 3 minutes and 45 seconds. Starting at 12:15 p.m., the siren will sound for three 15-second blasts to alert the community a test is underway. The initial 45 seconds of blasts will be followed by a single three-minute blast.
In addition to the sirens, students and faculty will receive an email that states a test is taking place. The email also includes information on how to access information and emergency notices, including the official school website and social media pages.
Seurattan said the tests are a good reminder for students and faculty of how to recognize and react to emergency alerts.
Members of the local community can also stay up to date on emergency situations by checking the William & Mary Facebook page and Twitter account.