Emergency text system active during power outage

By Colleen Vest

Campus Emergency Operations committee chose to activate the Illini-Alert emergency text message system in the wake of Sunday’s mass power outage, said Robin Kaler, spokeswoman for the University.

The committee is responsible for making any decision to activate the Illini-Alert system. Kaler said that the text was sent out Sunday night mainly to inform people who were off campus or in apartments.

“With the texts sent yesterday, that wasn’t the only way we were in contact with people,” Kaler said. “We had resident advisers and staff going around and talking to students in the dorms and campus buildings.”

Part of the reason for the text was the time of night, she said.

“As it got darker out, we wanted to make it clear that it wasn’t going to be back on for a while,” Kaler said.

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    The 150 new student registrations tallied this morning for the Illini-Alert system prove that last night’s message was a success, according to Kaler.

    Todd Short, who is in charge of the Illini-Alert system, confirmed that 17,600 of the 30,000 people registered received their text message. He said the other 13,000 subscribers had not yet taken the step of verifying their phone number as instructed on the Illini-Alert Web site.

    Short said cell phone providers received all text messages within roughly five minutes of the time they were sent.