Departments test communication in case of campus emergency

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 | 6:13 p.m. CST; updated 6:54 p.m. CST, Wednesday, January 19, 2011

COLUMBIA — Various university and city departments conducted a tabletop exercise Wednesday morning to test different elements of the campus emergency plan.

The tabletop exercise is a specific type of emergency drill practiced by MU police, said MU Police Capt. Brian Weimer. The exercise focuses on communication during an emergency, he said. 

"It was something we hadn't tested in a while, and communication was the focus this time," Weimer said.

Departments involved in the drill included the MU Police Department, the Columbia Fire Department, the Joint Communications Center and the Office of Emergency Management, according to a news release.

The MU News Bureau, Campus Facilities and University Hospital were also involved, Weimer said.

The tabletop exercise was conducted at the MU Police Department and took place from 8:30 a.m. to noon, according to the release. 

It is important to properly utilize technology during emergencies, Weimer said. 

"It's critical that the community and the media are aware of MU Alert, in order to eliminate phone calls," he said.

Weimer said it is important for students to let family and friends know they are OK during an emergency to avoid panic. 

According to the release, the university would like to remind faculty, staff and students to update their emergency contact information to make sure they are contacted in the event of a campus emergency. 

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