[updated to 5pm map, which is slightly better for us]
And, the Law School has issued its official a-hurricane-is-coming memo.
Update (5pm): The law school has provided this new information:
The University of Miami continues to closely monitor the progress of Hurricane Ivan. Although no decisions have been made at this point regarding the University’s status for Monday, September 13 (including class cancellations), it is highly possible that the University will be closed that day.
Specific information and instructions regarding classes and weekend events for students will be issued on Friday, September 10.
The University of Miami is closely monitoring the progress of Hurricane Ivan. All University operations are currently operating on normal schedules.
a. When will we be notified of any decision to close the Law School?
The University's Crisis Decision Team will continue to meet as necessary during the next few days. The University has maintained a state of readiness following Hurricane Frances, and most buildings already have hurricane shutters in place. We will send you another e-mail update tomorrow.
b. How can I find out if the University decides to close the Law School? You should take two steps right now:
- Print out this e-mail so you have the hotline number handy, and check it regularly as a hurricane nears.
The University has a hotline (305-284-5151), which gives information for the entire University, including the Law School. It is the University's prime means of communicating information about the status of the University in the event of a hurricane. You can also call the Dean of Students Office number (305-284-4551) for information specific to the Law School.
- Check your Law School e-mail and the Web page regularly before closing.
If the University announces a closing, we plan to send an e-mail to faculty, staff, and students and post the information on the web. If useful, we'll also post signs around the campus.
If you have a personal account that you prefer to use (e.g., yahoo or hotmail), that's fine, but you need to set your Law School e-mail account to forward to that account. It's easy to do. Go to the Current Students Web page and click on Student E-mail Forwarding, or click here.
c. How can I find out when the Law School is reopening?
The University has a hotline (305-284-5151), which gives information for the entire University, including the Law School. It is the University's prime means of communicating information about the status of the University in the event of a hurricane. You can also call the Dean of Students Office number (305-284-4551) for information specific to the Law School. You can also check your e-mail and the Law School web page. (They are taken down during a hurricane, but brought back up before re-opening.)
d. What do I need to do now? Double-check your own personal preparedness plan for a hurricane. Make sure you have water, flashlights, batteries, candles, non-perishable food, a full gas tank, cash, etc. Find out if you live in an evacuation zone, and decide where you'll go if you need to evacuate. The University does not provide hurricane shelter for students who do not reside on campus. Only those students who live on the University campus can be accommodated on campus during a hurricane.
Useful sources of information include:
- The National Hurricane Center website, http://www.nhc.noaa.gov * The Miami-Dade Emergency Management Office — http://www.co.miami-dade.fl.us/oem/hurricane/home.asp * The University's Hurricane Preparedness Website — http://www.miami.edu/prepare/. This page has many helpful links (check http://www.miami.edu/UMH/CDA/UMH_Main/1,1770,19025-1;20070-3,00.html), including the Broward County emergency management office. e. Will Law School e-mail and the Law School web page continue to function during a hurricane?
No. After the Law School closes, but before a hurricane strikes, we take down all the Law School's network servers. In the case of Frances, the Law School was closed as of 7:00 a.m. Thursday, September 2, and the network was taken down at about 11:00 a.m. Network service was restored around 1:30 p.m. Monday, Labor, Day, and students had remote access to their e-mail and the web page at that time, though a glitch in restoring service prevented access to the student computers in the Library and Room F200 until about 3:00 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 7.
f. What will happen to e-mail sent to my Law School e-mail account during the time the Law School network is shut down for a hurricane?
In the event of a future hurricane, the Law School will use a service that will cause your e-mail to queue up on a server outside Florida, and then be delivered to you after the Law School network is up and running again. Anyone who sends you an e-mail during a hurricane will receive a message back indicating that you haven't been able to access it yet. In the case of Frances, we did not yet have the service operational for students, so anyone e-mailing you during the hurricane probably received a bounce message.
g. Why doesn't the Law School keep its web site and e-mail running during a hurricane?
In a hurricane there's a good chance that the Law School will lose power, and it could seriously damage the network to have it crash. We have backup power which lasts up to 36 hours, but a power outage could easily be longer than that. That means we have two choices: (a) shut the network down before the hurricane in order to protect it, or (b) keep a staff member on-site during a hurricane so that the staff member could shut the network down if power were lost and the generator was running out of fuel. We choose (a) over (b) because requiring staff to stay here through a hurricane would be a major imposition, which we'd want to consider only if doing so was safe, practical — and essential. E-mail and web pages are important but not likely to be the center of anyone's attention during a hurricane. The University does take a different approach, requiring a network staff member to remain on campus throughout a hurricane. This reflects a general concern that the University has to maintain services for students living on campus — that's why Richter Library remained open longer than the Law Library, for example. The Law School computer resources department is investigating the possibility of keeping at least some limited web page and e-mail functions running throughout a hurricane through an alternate location outside South Florida, but we do not have that currently in place.
h. When will the network be taken down if the Law School closes?
This will happen after the closing. An e-mail will be sent with as much advance notice as we can give. If you have documents on the network that you wish to work on while at home, it would be a good idea to copy them onto a disk or e-mail them to a personal account (e.g., yahoo or hotmail) by the end of the day Friday.
i. Will any classes that were missed have to be made up?
You need to check with your instructors to find out how each class in which you are enrolled will be handled.