Emergency texting system offered

As of Aug. 1, the University has added the ability to send text messages to cell phones.

This capability is called the WUText Emergency Notification System and will be used only for imminent or actual campus emergencies and school closings.

WUText alerts only will be issued by the Chancellor, the Office of the Chancellor, the Office of Public Affairs, the chief of police or the director of the School of Medicine Protective Services’ Office.

The WUText system will not be used for routine University messages, alerts or vendor commercial announcements.

Participation in the WUText Emergency Notification System is voluntary, and text messages only will be sent to individuals who have provided their cell phone data and elected to participate. There is no cost to register for the program, although charges for receipt of a text message may apply, depending on the cellular service agreement.

Voluntarily registering for the system includes acknowledgment and acceptance of costs related to receipt of emergency messages and test messages.

The University has engaged clearTXT to provide this service. clearTXT is a Web-based program that is supported by technology in multiple locations outside of the St. Louis region. Using a third-party provider with data centers in different parts of the country further reduces the risk of disruption of our communications. clearTXT has the ability to send text messages and e-mails and will soon introduce the ability to send alerts to PCs.

In August, students, faculty and staff will receive an e-mail inviting them to participate in this program. The e-mail will include a user ID, a password and a link to the registration site.

The registration site must be visited directly and cell phone information must be input in order to receive text messages.

Registration can also be initiated by going directly to the Web site, wustl.cleartxt.com, without waiting for the e-mail invitation.

Parents, guardians of students and other partners of the University who wish to receive emergency text messages will be able to register and input their cell phone information directly at wustl.cleartxt.com.

Text messages are limited to 120 characters in length. The alert message will typically notify recipients that there is an emergency and it will direct them to other University emergency notification systems for more information, including the Emergency Notification Web Page (response.wustl.edu/), the Phone Emergency Announcement System (935-9000 or 1-888-234-2863), the Emergency E-mail Broadcast System, and the Chancellor’s, Deans’ and Department Heads’ offices.

Any questions about his program should be directed to Telephone Services at 935-5005 or University Information Services & Technology at 935-5707.