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Murray State University Designated Storm Ready

Murray State, KY Emergency Management, and National Weather Service officials teamed up for the Storm Readiness accreditation. (From left) Beverly Poole, Rick Shanklin, Jeff Steen, Cindy Painter, Josh Jacobs, Bill Call

By Angela Hatton

Murray, KY – The National Weather Service has designated Murray State University a Storm Ready campus. MSU is the ninth accreditation in western Kentucky, and the third university in the state to receive the designation. Weather Service Warning Coordinator Rick Shanklin says a community has to meet seven requirements to receive Storm Ready status. Shanklin says the most important is communication.

"There has to be multiple ways, their case, four ways to get warnings. Anytime we issue a tornado warning, severe thunderstorm warning, any type of weather warning to be able to receive that in case there's a breakdown in one or more ways. And then there has to be four ways to get those warnings out to everybody."

In the last two years, the university has installed new sirens on campus, set up emergency phone warnings. Officials say they plan to start sending out emergency messages on Twitter, and encouraging all students to sign up for text message warnings. The university will have to renew its Storm Ready status every three years.