Yesterday, at 1:44 pm, I was sitting in the hospital at the University of Michigan (no worries, a member of my family had a doctor’s appointment) when I felt a shaking. I looked around, but no one else seemed to notice. The only other person sitting on the bench was my father, so I thought he was moving about, but he wasn’t. So, I went back to reading.
About 15 minutes later, a voice came over the PA system at the hospital. The voice said that U of M Geologists had just confirmed that there was an earthquake, but that there was no harm done and the hospital would continue to function as normal. Approximately 15 minutes later, the voice repeated the message, adding that the quake was in Canada.
In the age of endless technology, it occurred to me that the only way to get this message out was the old-fashioned, simple but effective, PA system. Although I’m a big fan of text messaging services such as e2campus, and love when organizations post critical information on their Facebook pages, neither of these mediums would have reached me in the waiting room at the doctor’s office. The only way to reach me was by public announcement.
Also, kudos to U of M for responding so quickly and for confirming information before sending it out. Within 15 minutes, their geologists had confirmed the earthquake and they were making announcements to reassure the public that they were safe and everything would operate as normal. This response leaves me with a feeling that if something more critical were to arise, U of M is fully prepared to respond.
As a Michigan State student, it slightly pains me to say this, but U of M, great job responding to the earthquake on June 23, 2010.