Tornados and Severe Weather

Severe Thunderstorm Watch

Severe thunderstorms are possible, continue normal activities and monitor the situation.

Severe Thunderstorm Warning

Severe thunderstorms are occurring.

  • Keep people indoors and away from windows until the severe storm passes. If you are outside, seek shelter immediately.
  • Report injuries and damage on campus to the IU Police Department at 911 (9-911 will also work from an on-campus phone). If you're off-campus, notify the IU Police Department on your campus in addition to your departmental administrative office.

Tornado Watch

Tornados and severe thunderstorms are possible — continue normal activities but monitor the situation.

Tornado Warning

An actual tornado has been identified in the area by spotters and/or radar.

  • If in the warning area, seek shelter immediately. Stay away from windows and exterior doors. Basements, interior hallways on the lower floors and small interior rooms on the lower floors offer the best shelter.
  • Know the location of your nearest shelter in advance.
  • Do not open windows; this can increase damage to the building.
  • Report injuries and damage to the IU Police Department at 911 (9-911 will also work from an on-campus phone). If you're off-campus, notify the IU Police Department on your campus. Also, notify your local Campus Facilities Services or Physical Plant Offices of damage and your departmental administrative office.
  • If in a vehicle, get out and seek shelter in a sturdy building. If a building is not available, lying flat in a depression such as a ditch or ravine offers some protection.

Thunder and Lightning

If you hear thunder less than 30 seconds after seeing a flash of lightning, seek safe shelter immediately.

Weather Sirens

IUPUI / Indianapolis

Marion County operates tornado sirens which are tested every Friday at 11:00 AM. Upon hearing the siren for a weather emergency, follow the steps above for a tornado warning. Marion County's criteria for sounding the sirens can be found at

IUB / Bloomington

Monroe County outdoor warning sirens are tested the first Friday of the month at 12:00 noon, unless weather conditions are such that there may be a need for an actual warning.  Monroe County's criteria for activating the sirens can be found at the Monroe County site.

Weather Closing Information

Weather closing information is available from the sources listed on this site, which includes this site and local media.

Weather Radios

A NOAA Weather Radio can receive weather information broadcast by the National Weather Service (NWS). While many models are on the market, the features listed below are what to look for to provide maximum safety:

  • Tone Alarm — the radio will activate when the NWS sends out a signal that there is a weather emergency
  • SAME — the radio can be customized for specific counties
  • Battery Backup — if the electricity is off, the radio will continue to work
  • Public Alert Device — the radio meets standards set forth by the Consumer Electronics Association

Campus Emergency Status

Related Blog Posts

  • The NWS conducts Storm Spotter training across the state. Attend a class and know what dangerous weather looks like
  • Winter weather can wreak havoc with daily commutes to and from campus. Indiana University students and employees may want to review the tips below in case they find themselves in the unenviable – and scary – position of being stranded in their vehicles amid plunging temperatures and hazardous conditions.
  • John Summerlot gives advice on preparing vehicles and offices for emergencies. It's as easy as stuffing a backpack.

    IU EMC on Twitter

    • IU Notify
    • Be prepared at home
    • IU Ready can help create a departmental business continuity plan