by Dell Rae Ciaravola | November 14, 2016 7:40 AM
Winter weather may soon be here, and we wanted to provide you with information about how university officials make the decision whether or not campus will remain open or close for weather concerns.
In rare cases, extreme weather may necessitate a decision to cancel all classes and events and close campus or operate on a delayed schedule during winter conditions. However, the university’s goal is to remain open when possible, in consideration of tuition already paid by students and the university’s mission.
Living in Colorado means living with snowy weather. Unless weather is extreme and street crews are unable to keep up with clearing the snow, the university will likely stay open.
This story provides information about:
The Public Safety Team gathers information and makes a recommendation to the President regarding whether to stay open, delay the start of classes, close mid-day, cancel evening events and classes, or cancel all activities.
The Public Safety Team and President consider the following information:
When overnight storms are a factor, employees tied to the Public Safety Team start gathering information in the early hours of the morning and generally come together on a conference call by 5 a.m. to review information.
Safety is the primary concern in making these decisions, with the understanding that winter storms are common in Colorado and that if the majority of students and employees can safely travel to campus. However, individual students or employees who cannot travel safely should use sound judgment and make arrangements with their professors and supervisors. More information about making accommodations is further down in this email.
Individual departments or colleges do not have the authority to close down university operations. Events may be canceled at the discretion of event planners.
Administration aims to make the decision by 5:30 a.m. for overnight storms. On rare occasions, some circumstances push the decision to a later time.
During daytime storms or emergencies, safety officials keep tabs on conditions throughout the day and continually assess conditions. If conditions deteriorate to merit a closure discussion, a conference call is scheduled for as soon as possible to discuss an early closure or other options.
Employees and students who do not live on campus are asked to leave campus once it is closed. This allows facilities crews to more readily clear snow from parking lots and roadways as it accumulates. Some employees are required to report to campus even if the university is closed; otherwise, employees are encouraged to stay home.
The university notifies employees and students through a variety of means:
**Please note that it may take 10-15 minutes for all news media, the status line and other notification methods to be updated once the decision is made.
University employees with emergency duties should check with their supervisor about whether they are expected to report to work even if the university is closed.
The decision to re-open the campus will be made by the President with information from the Public Safety Team, based on weather and road conditions. If the campus is currently closed and weather conditions improve during evening hours, a decision to reopen the next day may be made that evening, or before 5:30 a.m. the next day, depending upon the weather forecast and available information.
If you are a student, it is your responsibility to make accommodations with all of your professors and instructors to be excused from class prior to your absence.
If you are an employee, it is your responsibility to make timely accommodations with your supervisor. Employees who cannot safely travel to work during adverse weather and who are not authorized to work from home or who cannot work from home should use annual leave or leave without pay if annual leave is not available.
Facilities Management strives to remove snow from sidewalks, parking lots and streets by 7:30 a.m. after an evening or early morning storm when the university is open. If a storm is moving in during operating hours, Facilities Management crews regularly shovel routes during the day. Snow is removed and ice melt is applied according to priority routes across campus, including vehicle, pedestrian, bike and transit routes, with a focus first on the most traveled sidewalks and streets. Some routes may be more clear of snow than other routes in the morning hours, particularly if snow falls during business hours and crews are making their rounds. Please use caution when walking and driving to campus, and wear appropriate clothing and shoes.
Areas of concern, including accessibility issues created by snow, should be reported to Facilities Dispatch at 970-491-0077. Please do not contact the university grounds crew or other Facilities Management employees directly; they may be away from their phones working to clear campus of snow.
More information on Facilities Management work to clear campus of snow
Some employees may be required to report to work because their job functions include maintaining or protecting the health, safety, or physical well-being of campus and students, faculty and staff, such as police officers, some facilities employees, those caring for certain research laboratories, or employees providing dining services to students. Employees should ask their supervisor for information about their designation.
All other employees should please leave campus in a timely fashion. In many cases, this is essential so that snow crews and others can clear lots and address safety concerns needed to get the campus open again.
Employees who are required to work are:
Campus employees should use their discretion in deciding whether they can safely commute to and from work. Employees may request time off prior to and in the absence of an official campus closure. With supervisor approval, and if the employee is unable or not authorized to work from home, employees must take annual leave or leave without pay if no annual leave is available. Campus supervisors are encouraged to be flexible in authorizing annual leave for employees in these situations.
A supervisor may determine that an alternate work arrangement, such as telecommuting, could be used during extreme weather conditions. Alternate work arrangements must be approved by the supervisor.
Contact your supervisor or MyHR at 970-491-MyHR (970-491-6947).
originally posted November 2, 2015
Source URL: http://source.colostate.edu/university-guidelines-weather-closure/
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