Inclement weather on the way

January 17, 2011

University Park, Pa. -- More winter weather is on the way, and although it's not supposed to be a large storm that hits the region surrounding Penn State's University Park campus, there is potential for sleet and ice mixing in with up to 2 inches of snow.

Penn State's Office of Physical Plant has been monitoring the storm, and is ready to act. Their plan currently is to have two salt trucks deployed on campus roads by 4 a.m. The entire landscape crew will report to campus by 5 a.m. to begin clearing campus sidewalks, while janitorial crews will be working around the clock to remove snow at building entrances.

Employees in essential services and operations are expected to report for work in most circumstances, and should contact their supervisors -- before severe winter weather strikes -- with any questions they may have about their status.

Students and employees should check Penn State Live, Penn State Facebook or PSUTXT for information related to classes or other University operations during inclement weather. Also, WPSU radio or TV will carry any message of class cancellations or delayed openings. Those not already subscribed to PSUTXT can sign up by going to online. Those with Penn State access accounts should click the WebAccess link found just below the "Students, Faculty and Staff" heading to log into existing accounts or create new accounts. Others can sign up for PSUTXT using the form at the bottom of the page.

"Your safety always comes first, and we advise students, faculty and staff repeatedly to put their own safety first," said Albert G. Horvath, senior vice president for finance and business.

University officials make judgment calls based on the best information available. University Park is a residential campus with thousands of students to feed and farm operations to maintain, and cannot close.

Class delays and cancelations are possible, but the University makes every attempt to offer the classes and services people expect and have paid for, explained Horvath.

Employees who are concerned about commuting to or from the University Park campus because of severe weather can take advantage of discounted hotel rooms at The Nittany Lion Inn and The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel. Call the hotels to check availability and whether or not the discount is available whenever severe weather and dangerous driving conditions exist or are anticipated.

"Supervisors should work to accommodate employees who wish to alter their work schedules because of the weather," said Horvath. "Staff may charge their absence to vacation time when weather conditions cause a concern for personal safety."

Faculty and staff also should review "Handling Weather Day Absences" (Human Resources Guideline 10) on the Web at for specific information on how time missed for weather situations is handled.

  • Umbrella-clad students make their way along Pollock Road on the University Park campus in this file photo.

    IMAGE: Annemarie Mountz
Last Updated March 21, 2011