Risk Management and Emergency Preparedness

Severe Winter Weather

Western Illinois University traditionally remains open for class and regular work schedules during severe winter weather. Severe weather include events such as ice storms, freezing temperatures, and major accumulations of snow.

Actions to be taken in the Event of Severe Winter Weather Occurs:

Working closely with the National Weather Service, the McDonough County Emergency Services Disaster Agency (ESDA), and other key agencies, when severe weather is predicted, the Office of Risk Management and Emergency Preparedness will assemble the Severe Weather Advisory Team to monitor weather reports and forecasts. They will review present weather conditions, the forecasted weather conditions, road/area conditions, and outside temperatures. Based on information received, the Risk Management and Emergency Preparedness Office will convey the information and recommended course of action to the President of the University or designee.

Once a course of action has been determined, notifications will be sent out by University Communications, Marketing & Media Relations through the Western Emergency Alert System (WEAS), WIU Website, WIU Social Media Platforms, and local/regional news/radio.

University Course of Action in the Event of Severe Winter Weather

The final decision to close the University, to cancel classes, or to take other appropriate actions in response to severe winter weather conditions shall rest with the President. The Office of Risk Management and Emergency Preparedness will be responsible for monitoring weather conditions A Severe Weather Advisory Team will provide recommendations to the President and Cabinet. In the case of severe winter weather, the University may choose one of the following courses of action:

  • University Weather Advisory:
    A University weather advisory will be issued with weather conditions are such that some employees and students could experience difficulty in getting to and from the University and/or classes. However, the majority of employees and students would be able to maintain their normal schedule. During an advisory, classes will not be canceled and the University will continue to operate on a normal schedule (classes and work operations). Some extra circular activities and events may be postponed or canceled.

  • Only Classes Cancelled:
    An Only Classes Canceled course of action will be taken when conditions are such that most students would be prevent from getting to classes safely.

    On occasion, classes being held in the daytime will be conducted, but due to weather conditions and/or poor visibility, night classes may be canceled.

  • University Closure:
    A University Closure may be declared when weather conditions are such that it would be unsafe for students and employees to attempt to get to campus. Only essential personnel will be required to be at their workstations.

Miscellaneous Items:

 All questions from news media about the status of work and/or class schedules should be directed to Western Illinois University Communications, Marketing & Media Relations.

 If the University is closed, University Housing and Dining Services will, if possible, provide food and housing for “emergency/weather essential personnel” who are required to be on campus.

 Facilities Management/Grounds Department will attempt to clear all sidewalks and parking lots as soon as possible. Prioritization of lots and sidewalks can be found here.

 WIU Severe Weather Advisory Team

  • Joe Roselieb, Executive Director of Auxiliary Services & Risk Management
  • Derek Watts, Director of the Office of Public Safety and Chief of Campus Police
  • Troy Rhoads, Assistant Vice President of Facilities Management
  • Dr. Kristi Mindrup, Vice President for WIU Quad Cities Operations
  • Darcie Shinberger, Assistant Vice President for Communications, Marketing & Media Relations