Severe Weather

Tornado/Severe Thunderstorm:

Some tornados and severe thunderstorms can be seen approaching, while others hit without warning. It is important to learn and recognize the danger signs and to follow the listed procedures.

Tornado/Severe Thunderstorm - Watch

A Watch is an indication of where and when the probabilities are highest that severe weather or a tornado could occur. A Watch is a statement that severe weather/tornado conditions are present and could occur. The National Weather Service will issue a Watch bulletin to local authorities as well as to the local radio and TV stations.

Tornado/Severe Thunderstorm - Warning

When a tornado sighting occurs or a severe thunderstorm occurs, the National weather Service alerts all weather stations and local authorities. If a tornado is approaching, a continuous sounding of emergency sirens will signal the Warning.

Note: the City of Duluth emergency sirens are sounded at 1p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month to test the sirens. This is only a test and does not indicate severe weather.


  • An approaching cloud of debris can mark the location of a tornado even if a funnel is not visible.
  • Before a tornado hits, the wind may die down and the air may become very still.
  • Tornadoes generally occur near the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not uncommon to see clear, sunlit skies behind a tornado

Emergency Procedures:

  • Review the locations of the Designated Campus Shelter Areas.
  • Monitor the sky conditions and advise anyone outside to seek shelter inside a building.
  • Close windows and blinds.
  1. In the event that the emergency siren located on the roof of Tower Hall is activated
    • Notify Campus Security by calling extension 6175.
    • Seek shelter in the nearest designated shelter area and advise all others to do so.
    • Remain in the designated shelter area until the severe weather has passed or until notified by campus security or the proper authorities.

Designated shelter areas:



Tower Hall

Student Union area

Tunnel and basement area without windows

Science Building

First floor center hallways

Windowless rooms


Basement level hallway

Locker rooms away from windows


Basement level away from windows

Somers Hall

Ground Floor Hall without windows

Groves Apartments

Evacuate to Tower Hall designated shelter areas

Theatre Building

Basement area away from windows

Tower Hall designated shelter areas

Pine, Maple, Willow, Birch, Cedar Hall, Scanlon Hall & Kerst Hall Apartments

Ground floor hallways or Tower Hall designated shelter areas

Winter Storms:

When a severe winter storm occurs on campus, the Vice President of Finance working with the President or members of the President's Staffwill decide whether the campus will close or whether personnel should leave work early. Personnel will be notified through supervisory channels and/or through an e-mail announcement.

Students, faculty and staff who question whether the college will be open after a major overnight snow storm should call the campus closing hotline at 723-7099 or tune into KDAL radio (610 - AM) for updated information about school closings.