Hurricanes are an unfortunate reality at the University of Miami. That is how we got our nickname! With hurricane season running June 1st through November 30th, the University has put several procedures in place to keep its students safe. Depending on the anticipated severity of a storm, the University of Miami may be required to evacuate its campuses for a Major Hurricane (category three or higher). While this is not a common occurrence, it is imperative that students and their families develop a personal evacuation plan now and be ready to implement that plan if a storm threatens the Miami area. Once an evacuation is ordered, all events and classes will be canceled and only pre-designated essential personnel will be allowed to remain on campus.
When a Tropical Storm or Hurricane threatens South Florida, the University will notify students of cancellations, closures, and the possibility of evacuations via Storm Alert emails and an Emergency Notification Network (ENN)
alert. The University’s Emergency Preparedness website
is always the best place to go to get the latest information and the Emergency Information Hotline
will also be activated to answer any of your questions.
• Emergency Preparedness Website: www.miami.edu/prepare
• Emergency Information Hotline:
Students are encouraged to complete the Evacuation Information requested through CaneLink
to notify the University of their plans during a storm and how to reach them. This process is accomplished by visiting https://canelink.miami.edu
and clicking on the Emergency Information link at the top left of the page. As storms approach, the University will send out emails to all students and conduct meetings with residential students providing them with more specific instructions.
BEFORE THE STORM
You must plan ahead in the event of a tropical storm or hurricane. Students and their families should develop their own personal emergency plans in the event Miami is threatened by a storm. These plans at a minimum should address the following.
Designate an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as a family contact. Be prepared to text, tweet, Facebook, or call to let people know your plan before a storm and that you are ok after.
Build or purchase an emergency kit with all the supplies you will need to last 3-5 days. Make sure to get cash and refill any prescriptions. Use these links to learn more:
• Ready South Florida
• Personal Preparedness
Protection of Valuables:
Purchase rental insurance for and take pictures/ inventory your personal possessions. Pick up all items from the floors and store in drawers and closets. Move furniture away from windows. Close and lock your windows. Bring inside any items you may have on balconies or other open areas. Unplug stereos, TVs, electronic equipment and lamps.
Protection of Data:
Back up computer data and take a copy with you. Unplug your computer and move it off the floor to a more protected area like a closet. Place your paper documents in waterproof containers and take with them you.
Keep your car filled with gas and check all fluids and tire pressures (including spare). Know how you will evacuate and the route you will take if an evacuation order is issued. Any student who cannot evacuate on their own will be asked to self-identify to University officials and will be transported to a local University-operated or county shelter.
Hurricane evacuation shelters are designed for safety, not comfort. Accommodations are extremely basic. Students who choose to stay in a local shelter should be prepared to sleep on the floor of a common area. Food and water will be provided, but we recommend that students bring a sleeping bag, a pillow, snacks and all prescription medications.
When an evacuation is ordered, you should do everything in your power to comply. The University will cancel all classes/ events and ask students to leave campus by a specific time and date. The University will provide as much notice as possible in helping students make arrangements so that they can provide for their own safety and welfare. Transportation will be provided to local airports. Most students travel to a designated relative or friend’s home within a 250-mile radius of Miami.
• Tell someone outside of the storm area (a relative or friend) where you are going.
• If you live on campus, please complete an Evacuation Info Card and register with the staff member at your residence hall front desk.
• Offer a ride and share sheltering options with other students who need transportation.
• Leave as soon as possible. Avoid flooded roads and watch for washed-out bridges.
• Bring your pre-assembled hurricane kit and protective clothing.
DURING THE STORM
It is essential that all students stay indoors throughout the entire storm. Do not go outside until given the ALL CLEAR from University or County officials. During the peak of the storm for maximum protection, it is suggested that students, get away from windows, close room/ bedroom doors and remain in hallways, bathrooms and/or living rooms. Do not attempt to open windows or doors to see what is happening outside. Wind currents are especially strong near high-rise buildings. Keep in mind that everything is calm when the eye of the storm passes overhead. Do not venture outside, as the second half of the storm will follow shortly.
During the storm, a “state of emergency” exists. As a result, alcoholic beverages or other substances that impair judgment are prohibited. On-campus residents may not use fire exits to go to an adjacent floor, and elevators will be shut off. Students who live in Hecht and Stanford Residential Colleges will be restricted to their floors during a hurricane. On-campus students should report all accidents, injuries, broken windows, or excessive water to your Resident Assistant or the reception desk of your residential college or apartment area.
AFTER THE STORM
In the immediate aftermath of a storm, communications may be severely disrupted. Check the Emergency Preparedness Website at www.miami.edu/prepare or call the Emergency Information Hotline at 1-800-227-0354 for the latest information. All students should also immediately attempt to contact family and friends by any available means (telephone, text, email, social media, etc) and let them know they are ok.
If the University was ordered to evacuate, DO NOT ATTEMPT TO RETURN TO CAMPUS until instructed to do so via an ENN Alert or the Emergency Preparedness Website. Students should check-in and indicate their whereabouts by accessing the Recover website at https://recover.miami.edu/ or calling the Emergency Information Hotline to assist the University in the reunification and recovery processes.
ADDITIONAL HURRICANE PREP RESOURCES