Due to Hurricane Irma UF Gainesville & UF Health is closing on Sunday and Monday

Published: September 7th, 2017

Category: News & Events

September 7, 2017 – 10:30AM

TO: All UF Faculty, Staff and Students

FROM: Dr. Charles E. Lane, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

RE: UF Gainesville is closing on Sunday and Monday

Due to Hurricane Irma, the University of Florida’s main campus in Gainesville will be closed on Sunday, Sept. 10 and Monday, Sept. 11. Only needed essential university personnel should report for work.

UF is currently scheduled to reopen and resume classes and normal operations on Tuesday, Sept. 12. The official site for university hurricane information is the UF home page.

Information on student services, including safety and dining, will be announced later today and distributed to students.

Depending on the hurricane’s projected impact, campus shelters may be opened for students, faculty and staff, and their family members.

We ask UF Health clinical and core service personnel to check with their supervisors as to whether they should report to work and provide support to the academic health center for emergency operations.

UF/IFAS personnel outside Gainesville should adhere to their county government guidelines on closing. Personnel in other UF programs outside of Gainesville should consult their supervisors.

P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School is also closed Monday and operating on the same schedule as Alachua County schools.

Supervisors, please ensure that all employees, including OPS, are informed of this closure.

Notices of any scheduling changes can be found through a link on the UF home page or on the information line at 866-UF-FACTS or 866-833-2287.

As always, students and employees in need of immediate assistance should dial 911. Students may also contact U Matter We Care at umatter@ufl.edu or by calling (352) 294-CARE (2273). Employees may call the Employee Assistance Program at (352) 392-5787.

September 6, 2017 – 4:30PM

LAKE NONA CAMPUS:

In anticipation of Hurricane Irma’s impact, the Lake Nona RAC has cancelled all academic programs and classes starting Thursday, Sept. 7, to allow for sufficient preparations and travel needs.  Faculty and staff should report as usual on Thursday to secure their offices, research and to take care of other issues.

The UFRAC campus will close for all faculty and staff on Friday, Sept. 8, and remain closed through the weekend and on Monday, Sept. 11.  Continued updates will be posted on http://www.ufl.edu/.

UF MAIN CAMPUS:

The UF administration plans to make a decision on any potential class cancellations or campus closures on Thursday once we have better information about the track of Hurricane Irma. As it is now, the main campus in Gainesville is not forecast to experience severe wind and rain until late Saturday at the earliest.

September 6, 2017 – 1:00PM

Overview Notes

  • Irma remains a category 5 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 185 and the center of storm is currently nearing the Virgin Islands.
  • The National Hurricane Center forecast has been shifted eastward to be in better agreement with the latest model guidance.
  • Irma will bring life-threatening wind, storm surge, and rainfall hazards to portions of the northern Leeward Islands, including the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico today.
  • A hurricane warning is in effect for the northern coast of the Dominican Republic, the southeastern Bahamas, the Turks and Caicos, and portions of Haiti, with a hurricane watch is in effect for the central Bahamas and much of Cuba.  Irma is likely to bring dangerous wind, storm surge, and rainfall to some of these areas tonight through Friday.
  • Irma could directly affect the remainder of the Bahamas and Cuba as an extremely dangerous major hurricane later this week.

Statewide Notes

  • Direct impacts from wind, storm surge, and rainfall are possible in the Florida Keys the Florida Peninsula beginning later this week and this weekend.  However, given the forecast uncertainty at these time ranges, it is too soon to specify the location and magnitude of these impacts.
  • Widespread government and school closures on Thursday and Friday are in place for South Florida and spreading into Central Florida.
  • All state-controlled offices will be closed on Friday.
  • UF operations outside of Alachua County should generally follow their local government closures.

Campus/Local Notes

  • It is still too early for the National Weather Service-Jacksonville to forecast specific impacts for our area but their language now includes an increasing chance for tropical storm conditions over NE Florida this weekend.
  • Alachua County has declared a local state of emergency and a declaration is also expected for the City of Gainesville.
  • All UF units should review tropical weather plans and be prepared to implement by the end of the week/weekend.
  • Updates are being posted on the UF homepage for the University community and a communication is planned for today.
  • Kickoff for the Gator football game has been moved to Noon on Saturday.

September 5, 2017 – 2:30PM

The University of Florida is actively monitoring the track of Hurricane Irma and much remains unknown about the storm’s path. UF’s emergency managers are participating on daily calls with local and state forecasters and emergency managers to learn the latest track and impacts. We will update the greater Gator community on efforts, expected impacts or schedule changes as information is available. Here’s what we know today:

Overview

  • Irma is a currently a category 5 hurricane and will bring life-threatening wind, storm surge, and rainfall hazards to portions of the northeastern Leeward Islands beginning later today and the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico beginning tomorrow.
  • Irma could directly affect the remainder of the Bahamas and Cuba as an extremely dangerous major hurricane later this week.
  • Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during the next day or two, but Irma is forecast to remain a powerful category 4 or 5 hurricane during the next couple of days.

Statewide

  • The chance of direct impacts from Irma later this week and this weekend is increasing in the Florida Keys and most of the Florida Peninsula. However, it is too soon to specify the timing and magnitude of the impacts.
  • UF operations in South Florida should be prepared to implement tropical weather plans by Thursday and Friday as well as closely monitor announcements from local governments. UF facilities outside of Alachua County will generally follow closures of their local government.
  • Always subject to timing change, but coastal evacuations and government closures are anticipated for South Florida beginning on Thursday.

Campus/Local

  • It is still too early to speculate on potential local impacts from Irma. Considerable uncertainty remains about this weekend’s track and intensity of Irma.
  • However, there is an increasing threat for potential impacts Sunday night through Monday night.
  • The Gators have a series of athletic events scheduled this weekend in soccer on Friday and Sunday, volleyball on Friday and Saturday, and the home opener in football on Saturday. Any schedule changes will be announced in advance.

Ongoing

  • UF’s home page at ufl.edu is the place to find official information regarding the storm as it relates to the university community.
  • In addition, information will also be updated on UF’s information line at 1-866-UF-FACTS.

Dear Colleagues:

This morning, the University of Florida announced that main campus will close on Sunday, Sept. 10, and Monday, Sept. 11. More information is posted at UFL.edu.

Here at UF Health in Gainesville, we are likely to activate our hospital and clinical emergency response plans over the weekend. Our priority is to continue supporting the health care needs of our patients and community and those who may be transferred to us from evacuated areas. And we must remain ready to provide care to others who may have injuries related to the severe weather, along with regular daily operations.

For our UF faculty, residents and staff and UF Health Shands employees who have a role in hospital and clinical operations and support, you are part of our essential personnel pool and we may need you. Good communication is important: Please consult with your supervisor, share your availability and support plans so we have adequate staffing to meet our operational needs. Thank you for your important service during such emergencies.

Outpatient (ambulatory) services:

  • Our Gainesville-based UF Health Physicians practices will remain open tomorrow (Friday, Sept. 8), but will close Monday, Sept. 11. Appointments are being rescheduled. We anticipate all practice sites to be open again on Tuesday morning.
  • UF Health Shands outpatient services will remain open tomorrow (Friday, Sept. 8) and leaders will continue to assess anticipated weather impacts. Friday morning, they will make a decision about rescheduling appointments and elective procedures for Monday, Sept. 11.
  • UF Health Shands E.R.s will remain open.
  • Other clinical closures include:

Please help support these decisions and be on standby for further changes. We will work with the appropriate teams and keep everyone updated.

We are hoping for the best here in North Central Florida. Please plan accordingly to keep your loved ones safe. Check out helpful resources on the Bridge Emerging Issues Info & Response site, which includes some city and county emergency operations resources.

 

Again, thank you for the work you do every day to support patient care, and especially at times like these.

Michael L. Good, M.D.
Dean, UF College of Medicine
Acting Senior Vice President for Health Affairs, UF
Acting President, UF Health

Ed Jimenez
Chief Executive Officer
UF Health Shands

Marvin Dewar, M.D., J.D.
Senior Associate Dean, UF College of Medicine
Chief Executive Officer, UF Health Physicians