Know what to do when severe winter weather hits

Campus already has seen winter weather with snow hitting the ground on a couple of occasions, but this is just the beginning of the season. Here's a reminder of Iowa State's guidelines when severe winter weather hits.

Last year was a rarity

Dangerously cold weather last January led to university administrators calling off classes and closing campus offices for two and a half days. That is rare. How rare? It was only the sixth time ISU offices closed since 1971.

How to find out about cancellations or closings

Start at the Iowa State homepage, and don't forget to refresh the page when weather is a concern. Closings and cancellations also will be posted on the ISU Facebook and Twitter accounts and broadcast on area TV and radio stations.

The university usually stays open when classes are canceled

Even if classes are called off, ISU offices normally are open and employees should plan to work. If travel safety is a concern, contact your supervisor and request to make up missed time or take vacation or leave without pay. Always err on the side of safety, and supervisors should accommodate employees who can't make it to campus.

What happens if the university closes?

Vital operations -- for example, police, parking, food service, power plant, critical maintenance and snow removal -- generally remain open. Employees should follow policies established in their units and contact a supervisor if they are unsure if they need to work. Faculty and professional and scientific staff whose work responsibilities aren't based on a specific schedule should consult with unit leaders and adjust as needed. All other employees are expected to either make up missed time or take vacation or leave without pay.

Where to park

If your parking lot has not been cleared yet, don't park there. There are three designated lots during inclement weather where all ISU parking permits will be honored:

  • Southwest corner of Iowa State Center (lots A3, A4, B5 and B6)
  • North of Molecular Biology Building (lots 29 and 30)
  • North of General Services Building (lot 41)

During poor weather, CyRide adds buses to its routes. Free shuttles run to campus from the Iowa State Center lots every five to 10 minutes.