I just wanted to write to share with you our preparations for Hurricane Sandy, which is currently estimated to make landfall on Tuesday at 2 a.m. in New Jersey. We could start experiencing some initial winds and rain as early as Monday midday.
Yale Dining, Transportation, Police, Facilities, and many other departments have established hurricane protocols that are in place-- and that proved very effective during Hurricane Irene last year. For example, we have the ability for those living on campus with dining contracts to be given “brown bag” meals to keep in their rooms so they do not have to go out-of-doors during the storm. Also given Yale’s utility systems, it is highly unlikely that the residential colleges would lose electrical power - even if some of New Haven is adversely affected.
The website http://emergency.yale.edu will be used for updates on the weather, and Yale’s announcements will be posted there—so you might want to check it periodically on Monday and Tuesday. Depending on the course and strength of the storm as it approaches New Haven, we may have to make changes to a number of services such as dining and shuttle buses, and the hours of operation of the library, gym and other offices. These announcements will be included on this website. If the severity of the storm requires me to cancel all classes, I will write a specific message to the students.
The most important thing you can do for us is to underscore to your son or daughter to take our messages seriously. If we conclude it necessary to direct students to stay in their residence halls for a certain number of hours as the storm passes, it will be in the interest of their personal safety: During the last hurricane, many large trees fell on campus, and power lines were down on the streets immediately around campus.
I’ve just written to the students, and I’ve urged those who are currently at home to be as helpful as possible to those of you in the region that could be affected in making your own preparations. Let’s hope the storm turns right into the North Atlantic, but I wanted you to know that we are prepared.
Dean of Yale College