Emergency call boxes quick, effective for those who need assistance

Christine Lee, News Editor

For most students, the emergency call boxes located throughout campus are taken for granted. They know they will be there in case of an emergency.

“I think they’re a great feature to have; they’re all over the place, they’re easy to find, easy to see,” senior mechanical engineering major Charlie Reilly said. “If there was an emergency situation that arose and I was in danger of some sort or if saw someone else was I would definitely use the buttons.”

However, for the past few weeks one call box pole located behind Chase Hall between Kirby Hall and Stark Learning Center was out of order, leading some to question how reliable the call boxes really are.

“It’s not encouraging so it’s something that’s unfortunate in that I would hope to get fixed as soon as possible,” Reilly said.

Freshman integrative media major Annie Stauffer said call box behind Chase Hall being out of order concerns her because she has a night class.

“That bothers me a little bit. I have a night class on Thursdays so I like the idea of when they’re working,” Stauffer said. “I understand that happens sometimes.”

Executive Director of Capital Projects John Pesta said the call box pole behind Chase has had its light replaced and has been repaired. He said various campus help departments work to repair the call boxes

“We’ll check them internally with our electricians and if it’s a phone line, if there’s no dial tone to it, we’ll contact IT cause IT knows the phone system,” Pesta said.

Public Safety manager Jerry Rebo explained the boxes are checked frequently to ensure their workability.

“We check them twice a week to see if they’re in good operating condition plus the electricians check them,” Rebo said.

Rebo said if the button on the boxes was pressed, the response from Public Safety to the scene would be instant.

“It would be within three minutes,” Rebo said. “The average would be a minute or less.”

The Beacon tested the response time of Public Safety to a call from an emergency box and they arrived on the scene in one minute and 19 seconds.

Rebo said there are approximately 50 call boxes on campus and are located on all residence halls and various locations on campus based on student traffic.

“We check and see which way the students travel most of the time; to classes and so forth, even at night, what routes they take on campus or off campus and that’s where they’re placed,” Rebo said.

He said Public Safety is always looking to improve where the call boxes are located. One possibility they have brought up is placing one behind the Marts Center as more students are passing that direction.

“We’re always looking to improve and we are looking (to place) a pole behind Marts,” Rebo said. “That’s another area we think that the students do travel at night.”

One parking lot that doesn’t have a call box is the Creative Writing parking lot, located on the corner of Ross and River streets. Rebo said there have been no instances of break-ins at the lot.

“We haven’t had a break-in in there for months,” Rebo said.

Stauffer said she feels she would use the call boxes if there was an emergency.

“I think it’s the fastest way to get help if there’s an emergency,” Stauffer said.