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UNC-Chapel Hill will test its emergency sirens on Monday, Jan. 31, between noon and 1 p.m. as part of Alert Carolina, a campus-wide safety awareness campaign.

Anyone outside on or near campus, including downtown Chapel Hill, may hear the sirens during the test. The test checks equipment and reminds students, faculty and staff what to do in an emergency. No action is needed. The sirens will sound an alert tone along with a brief pre-recorded message. When testing is complete, a different siren tone and voice message will signal “All clear. Resume normal activities.” Samples of the alert and “all clear” audio tones are available at

The sirens will only sound for an imminent, life-threatening emergency such as:

* an armed and dangerous person on or near campus,
* a major chemical spill or hazard, or
* a tornado sighting.

If the sirens sound, go inside or take cover immediately. Close windows and doors. Stay until further notice. The sirens also broadcast short pre-recorded voice messages. When the threat is over, the sirens sound again with a different tone to announce along with the voice message: “All clear. Resume normal activities.”

“The sirens are our most direct way to quickly tell people about a life-threatening emergency on or near campus,” said Chief Jeff McCracken, director of public safety. “We conduct regular tests to remind everyone what the sirens sound like. We want students, faculty and staff to think about what they would do in a real emergency.”

The sirens are located at Hinton James Residence Hall off Manning Drive; the Gary R. Tomkins Chilled Water Operations Center behind the Dogwood Parking Deck; Winston Residence Hall at the corner of Raleigh St. and South Road; near Hill Hall behind University Methodist Church; and next to University buildings and support facilities near the Giles Horney Building off Martin Luther King Blvd.

More information.