Campus-wide test of Western Alert Emergency Communications on Nov. 1 at 10:50 a.m.

Western Washington University plans to test its Western Alert emergency communications system at 10:50 a.m. on Wednesday, November 1st. The Western Alert system is a group of ways to reach students, faculty, and staff with important safety information. 

In conjunction with the test of the Western Alert Test system, a voluntary all-campus lockdown drill will take place at the same time – 10:50 a.m. on Wednesday, November 1. During the drill, the campus community is encouraged to physically assess their surroundings and visualize actions and steps they would take if this was an actual emergency. For more information on recommended actions, see the Emergency Management & Business Continuity website.

Western Alert test: The following Western Alert elements will be tested on November 1: 


  • Desktop notification on installed computers throughout campus, including offices,  classrooms and computer labs. Users need to only click on the green “Acknowledge” button to make the test message disappear.

  • Voice messages over the campus fire alarm system (building enunciation). 

  • Text messages to everyone who has registered in Web4U at MyWestern. 

  • Emails to every university email address. 

  • Messaging on the emergency communication webpage, and university homepage. 

  • Messaging on some digital information boards.

During the test, a test voice message (building enunciation) will be repeated several times in buildings as well as some outside speakers at the university tennis courts, the south campus oval at the Communications Facility, and at the Old Main lawn. Amber fire alarm strobes also will flash in the main corridors of academic buildings and bathrooms. 

A critical element of Western Alert, a text message is one of the most reliable ways to quickly provide emergency information. Even if users do not regularly text on their cell phones, most phones can receive text information. Western students, faculty and staff who have not yet registered to receive Western Alerts via text message are asked to update their personal information via the Web4U application. Employees may also call the Human Resources Department at 360-650-3774 for assistance in signing up. For more information, visit Western’s Safety and Emergency Information webpage

Students who have concerns or feel anxious after the drill may contact Western’s Counseling and Wellness Center, 360-650-3164. Employees may contact the Employee Assistance Program at 877-313-4455.