Blizzard alert: campus facilities opening
Posted on February 15, 2015
8:20 p.m. update: Wheaton College will resume normal operations. Classes and activities will take place as scheduled on Monday, Feb. 16.
Given the high winds and extreme cold temperature forecast for the region over the next 24 to 48 hours, students are urged to exercise caution. Campus roads and paths may become slippery, due to blowing and drifting snow and ice. Students should be alert snow and ice may be blown off roofs and trees.
Bitter cold temperatures also present a hazard. With wind chills forecast for 20 to 30 below this evening, hypothermia and frostbite can occur. When outside, it is important to dress warmly and in layers.
Public safety officials report that travel remains hazardous for motorists and pedestrians. The height of snow banks lining roads and parking lots obstruct visibility, making it difficult for motorists to spot pedestrians. Area roadways are still being cleared.
Parking restrictions remain in effect until Monday at 6 p.m.
4:45 p.m. update: Wheaton College will open several facilities for student use, now that the snowfall has ended.
The facilities that will open are the Library (5 p.m. to 2 a.m.), Balfour-Hood (8 p.m. to 2 a.m.) and the Haas Athletic Center, for regularly scheduled practices.
Given the high winds and extreme cold temperature forecast for this evening, students are urged to exercise caution and avoid venturing outside more than necessary.
9:30 announcement: A blizzard bringing a foot or more of snow, high winds and extreme cold is moving through the region today (Sunday, Feb. 15) and Wheaton College students are urged to remain indoors as much as possible during the storm.
Dining services in Chase and other essential services will continue. Other dining locations and college facilities, such as the library, will be closed on Sunday, until further notice. In departments that provide essential services, supervisors are responsible for coordinating schedules so that services continue. Parking restrictions remain in effect.
Students should plan to remain indoors as much as possible and should not venture out during the day, which is when the storm is expected to peak. Also, students should make sure that all windows and exterior doors in dorms are kept closed, that you have stocked up on any prescribed medications that you may require, and keep cell phones and other mobile devices charged. Please remember that the use of candles is prohibited.
Students with medical conditions who would require assistance if dorms need to be evacuated should notify residential life staff or your RA or AC, so that they will be able to assist you as soon as possible.
During the height of the storm, high winds and near white-out conditions from heavy snowfall are possible. Only venture outside if absolutely necessary, such as going to Chase Dining Hall for meals. We urge you to exercise caution to avoid falling debris, slippery pathways and other unsafe conditions.
Public safety officials and other staff members will be in regular contact with Norton emergency officials as well as with the National Weather Service for updates. And we will keep the campus updated and informed as details unfold. Check Wheaton’s emergency page to get the most up to date information. The next scheduled update will take place on Sunday evening, by 10 p.m.
We encourage all students, faculty and staff to remain attentive to our website for updates. We want everyone to be safe.
If there are any problems or safety issues, please contact Public Safety at 508-286-8213 or 508-285-5051.
To enable clearing campus roads, paths and parking lots as quickly as possible, the college has instituted its snow removal plan. (See restrictions and map.)