Tips for icy conditions

January 29, 2014 11:00 AM

Alicia Duplessis Jasmin

The decision to close several Tulane University campuses this week was made by university administrators with the welfare, safety and security of students, faculty and staff in mind, says Norris Yarbrough, the university’s emergency response director.

Norris Yarbrough

With freezing temperatures predicted until Thursday (Jan. 30) morning, Norris Yarbrough, Tulane University’s emergency response director, offers advice on dealing with an icy winter storm. (Photo by Ryan Rivet)

“Several factors come in to play with a decision to cancel classes,” Yarbrough said. “With the severity of Winter Storm Leon and the numerous impacts it is having on travel and outdoor safety in general, the decision of the President’s Cabinet, with advice from the Tulane Emergency Operations Center, was to cancel classes.”

While campus offices are closed on Tuesday (Jan. 28) and Wednesday (Jan. 29), the university provided support services to students on campus. Tulane Facility Services and the Department of Housing and Residential Life monitored safety conditions in and around the buildings used by the residents on campus.

Yarbrough said the Tulane Emergency Operations Center continues to monitor weather conditions and communicate with parish and state officials to coordinate their response to the changing conditions from Winter Storm Leon.

Through Thursday (Jan. 30) morning, conditions are expected to be unsafe for normal travel in some areas of southern Louisiana. Yarbrough offered these tips for navigating during icy conditions.

• Avoid driving unless absolutely necessary. If you must drive, avoid low visibility conditions, ice-covered roads, overpasses and bridges.

• Wear shoes or boots with non-skid soles.   

• Be extra careful when crossing streets. Drivers will have a more difficult time stopping on icy roads. 

• Beware of ice on streets, sidewalks and stairs. Ice may develop on surfaces in a short time and can be practically invisible.   

• Give yourself extra time to arrive at your destination if walking on campus. Take small steps, use caution and walk on grass instead of sidewalks.  

• Ice storms can cause downed power lines. If you see one on campus, stay away from the line and call the Tulane University Police Department at 504-865-5911.

• Continue to check the Tulane emergency page and the Alert Line (877-862-8080) for updates and any change in status. You also may follow the Tulane Emergency Response Department on Twitter @TulaneEmergency.

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Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000