The Police Department is responsible for all emergency notifications on campus. Once notified of an emergency, responding officers and police department supervisory staff will determine if the situation requires a campus wide notification. Once the emergency has ended, notice will be sent out to the community using the same methods as the original notification.
The TXState Alert system is an emergency notification system that allows for texting to be sent directly to your cellular phone. Texas State University has provided this system at no charge and has pre-registered all users into the system using their “@txstate.edu” email address (*NOTE-depending on your texting plan you are responsible for any additional text charges from your provider). Each user has a console in the system that is accessed using your NetID and password (the same used to login to Bobcat Mail and more). The console can be logged into at any time so that you can update your phone number for the system.
Once decided an emergency message is warranted one or more of the following methods will be used:
(Note: Not all methods above will be used during an emergency. The university web page will be used to provide follow up information as needed.)
When an alert is sent out is it will be across several media types. These media types may have limitations on the number of characters allowed for a post. Just as an example when we use Twitter we have 126 characters to work with after the words “TXState Alert-“, with text messages we have 146 characters left. We try and give the best description possible but trying to do so in proper sentence structure is normally not possible. The other media types do allow for more characters but creating longer messages takes time. During an emergency the faster we get a message out the faster our community can react to the situation.
Federal law requires the university to notify the community of an emergency as soon as possible after a situation is reported to the police or other officials. When an emergency happens the faster the information is pushed out the quicker people can react to try and protect themselves. In the situation where a violent crime has occurred the information will not only allow the community to protect themselves it can lead to the apprehension of the suspect in the crime itself. If the information is not clear you can reply to the message if it is a text or email, if by other media types you can call the University Police on a 24/7 basis at 512-245-2805 or 911.
We will try and provide information as to what we want you to do in situations like bomb threats, gas leaks, building fires and similar events. This might be to shelter in place, evacuate or avoid an area or building. If it is a violent crime against an individual we try and include as much of a description as possible as quickly as possible.
We do not include parents directly in our emergency notification system. This is because the amount of additional text messages and emails necessary to send out would drastically slow down the response system. Despite this, we have many other outlets for parents/guardians to stay informed such as the website firstname.lastname@example.org, a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/texasstatepolice), Twitter (https://twitter.com/txstateupd) . There is also the University’s emergency hotline that can be reached at 1-512-245-2424.
Yes. The TXState Alert system will be tested at certain times each semester to verify subscriptions to the system and to ensure that the system is working properly.
The response you should have received is: "Broadcast Alert response received. If you meant to post to a Group, please verify the keyword and try again". This means that your reply was received by the TXState Alert System, the second part referring to "Group" is informational only, we do not use groups so it can be ignored.
You will only receive text messages during an emergency situation or during a planned test. During an emergency we cannot say how many will be sent but you will always receive at least two, one telling you of the emergency and one telling you the emergency has ended. If the system is being tested you will receive ONLY two, one advising the system test and one advising the test has ended. You will not be spammed- we do not send out ads, reminder dates, payment reminders, tips, etc.
The system is provided to you at no additional cost. You are however responsible for any cost associated with receiving the text message on your phone.
On a text the sender will be 67283 (other numbers may show depending on load), this is the short code for the TXState Alert system. The messages will vary in content but will ALWAYS have the words “TXState Alert” in the message. TIP: If you save the code “67283” (and add others to same) in your phone contacts as “TXState Alert” your phone will caller ID the text as such.
The “from” will be “TXState Alert email@example.com. The “subject” will always have the wording “TXState Alert”. The message content will vary depending on the situation but will contain “TXState Alert”.
All messages will have the words “TXState Alert” in the message formatting. You should also see multiple types of messages ie: text, email, hear horns, web page change. We do not just send a message to one media type, we always notify the community using two types of media. The most common is email blast and webpage update with the same information. Because of the text and signboard message length requirements they will always be short and point back to the www.txstate.edu for more information.
The emergency itself will have to dictate the extent of the notice and how it is sent. The Office of Emergency Management and Police Department will determine what notice is best as campus wide notices are not always required, sometimes more targeted messages will be of more benefit to the community and easier to manage for the Police Department. If it is something that could have an immediate impact on the community at large then a campus wide all media message may be sent. If the situation can be controlled and confined to a small area then the more targeted message may be best. There is no true yes or no type answer to this question but please remember that the best of the community is always in mind when any messages are sent.
The message will contain basic information on what to do, ie: shelter in place, go indoors, avoid an area, follow those directions. If you are in class the instructor/professor will be able to provide additional guidance. If in an administrative area again someone will provide additional guidance. The best place for general information on what to do, and what to watch for is on the Emergency Procedures website at www.emergencyinfo.txstate.edu. This site gives links to multiple areas for guidance and procedures and the Police Website for Safety Training Videos www.police.txstate.edu/Services/Safety-Training-Videos.html gives additional information on active shooter situations.
You should contact the Office of Emergency Management at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone (512) 245-6636 or in person at the Police Department in the Nueces building. Your questions will be answered and if you need some type of training it can be provided either by an Emergency Management official or by a member of the Police Crime Prevention unit.