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Tornado Policies in BRWN and WTHR buildings

THIS IS NOT A FINISHED DOCUMENT. The most recent changes were made Monday, February 18, 2002.

The Department of Chemistry is the primary academic deparment occupying the WTHR and BRWN buildings, and the research staff, teaching staff, support staff, and chemistry course students are estimated to account for over 95% of the occupancy of the two buildings. It seems therefore appropriate that the Depratment of Chemistry address the question of how to get everyone to the basements in case a tornado warning is sounded.

Shortened/paraphrased relevant sections from PU Em Proc Hndbk and Tornado Proc


  • Locate accessible basement or corridor location in your building.  All rooms on main corridor will post exit route map and short emergency instructions at or on inside of door.
  • Stay informed through local media sources on days when severe weather is expected.
  • Obtain a NOAA Weather Radio with a warning alarm tone and battery backup
  • Keep  good reliable flashlight in your office/work area.
  • Contact the Safety & Security Department for more information on Tornadoes.


  • Exterior warning = 3 minute siren blast.  Interior warning is from NOAA radio.
  • Go to basement/subwalk, or lower floor inner corridor. Away from glass. Be ready to kneel facing wall and cover head.


  • All clear is broadcast by National Weather Service broadcast ("expired").  Stay in until then.
  • Beware of down wires, broken gas lines....; stay out of damaged areas.
  • Report emergencies if necessary.  494-2000  Emergencies only.  Do not phone for information.