Alert system at UAH gets upgrade

By Margo Gray – bio | email

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Alert system at UAH was put to the test during a tragic incident on the campus of UA-Huntsville five months ago, but it was a test it didn't pass.

The system is supposed to notify students and faculty about dangers on campus, but school officials discovered it's a system needing a second look.

When students needed an emergency alert to dangers on campus, some say it failed them.

February 12th-- the day when gunfire erupted on the campus and six faculty members were shot-- residence halls went on lock down and students, like junior Ashley MacWhirter said they were left in the dark.

"We never heard anything about it, even with my email I never did get an email at all," said MacWhirter.

"I was on campus when it happened, and I didn't know for an hour what was going on," add Angel Abram, student.

The university has the U-Alert system in place to notify students through email or text message instantly about severe weather or something more serious.

"There was not an immediate alert, but with that we want to make sure we air on the side of caution. It will be a reminder that there is a means of communicating, we want to make sure that everyone is able to get the message," said UAH Spokesperson, Ray Garner.

Only two officers had the authority to trigger the alert system, now a total of seven administrators will.

The school is investing millions into upgrading technology to handle more emails and texts messages on multiple devices for students.

"Anything that we know before hand, it's just that much safer for us," said junior Todd Pridmore.

The school will test the system next week and will start routine tests every month.

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