Stay Informed

In emergencies, there are two ways to get the important information: (1) AlertSU mass notifications to your phone and (2) the Stanford emergency website These two sources will give you the most up to date alerts and information from the university.

AlertSU for Emergency Notifications

AlertSU is a rapid notification system used to issue campus-wide emergency alerts. AlertSU messages provide immediate emergency information, and are sent by mobile SMS/text messages, email, and also by VOIP (university desk phones).  AlertSU mass notification messages are sent to undergraduate and graduate students, post-docs, faculty, staff, emeriti and affiliates.

To receive AlertSU notifications, Stanford students, faculty and staff must maintain up-to-date emergency contact information per the following instructions.

  • Students and Postdocs: Update information through Axess.
    University policy requires that students provide the following information:
    • Stanford email address
    • Local phone number
    • At least one additional point of contact.

Contact information is removed from the AlertSU system when University affiliation changes (for students – graduation or leave of absence; for faculty/staff – change in employment status).

  • Faculty / Staff / Emeriti & Affiliates: Update contact information in StanfordYou

The University requires that employees maintain their directory entry and opt in to AlertSU with their work phone number, email address, and any university-issued or reimbursed cell phone number. Please allow the system 24 hours to implement any changes to contact information.

To update information in StanfordYou, go to the “Maintain Your Directory and AlertSU Emergency Contact Information” link. The following fields are loaded into the AlertSU system:

    • Stanford University Contact Information
      Email address: Directory Listing Email
      Email address: Optional Secondary Email (may be a non-Stanford email address; must be a complete address, i.e., )
    • Mobile Contact Info
      Mobile contact info: Mobile Phone (must enter all 10 digits of number; international numbers are not recognized by the AlertSU system)
    • Stanford Affiliation
      Work phones: Work Phone 1
      Work phones: Work Phone 2
    • Home Phones & Address
      Permanent Phone & Address: Phone (international numbers are not recognized by the AlertSU system)
      Temporary Phone & Address: Temporary Phone

If you wish to receive voice or text messages on a personal phone enter that information into your Stanford directory account and verify the opt in box above the number is checked. If you do not check the box indicating “OK to use for AlertSU”, the number will not be added to the AlertSU system.

Emeriti and university affiliates sponsored at any level are eligible to opt themselves into the AlertSU mass notification system through the StanfordYou website. The opt in/out section is under the “Maintain your directory and AlertSU emergency contact information” link on the site. Affiliates may also be opted in by their sponsor in the Sponsorship Manager portal.

Stanford Emergency Website

All AlertSU messages are automatically posted to the University emergency website. As a situation develops, further information and instructions can be found on the web at: This site is updated frequently during an emergency situation and is the primary source of the most complete and timely information for the Stanford community.

Outdoor Siren Warning System

The outdoor warning system uses seven loud sirens located throughout campus.  Each siren emits an emergency alert tone and verbal instructions for those who are outside. This system is used when there is a clear and present life safety threat to the campus community that requires immediate action by all campus community members. 

Blue Emergency Towers

Campus community members and visitors can use any of the lighted, bright blue emergency towers located throughout campus to request immediate assistance from local law enforcement resources. Pushing the large red call button on the tower connects immediately to the local emergency dispatch that is staffed 24 hours a day, and also activates a blue strobe light on top that alerts others, including responding deputies to your location.  Please remember that the blue emergency tower phones are in place for reporting emergencies only. Intentional misuse, prank calls, or tampering with these phones is a criminal offense.

Off-Campus Community Alert and Mass Notification Systems

Many local municipalities maintain their own emergency mass notification systems. Links to the main systems in use in the San Francisco Bay Area are listed below. 

  • San Mateo County sends emergency alerts to residents who have signed up to receive them at
  • Santa Clara County sends emergency alerts to residents who have signed up to receive them at
  • Alameda County sends emergency alerts to residents who have signed up to receive them at    
  • The City and County of San Francisco sends emergency alerts to residents who have signed up to receive them at 

If you live in a county other than the four referenced above, a quick online search using your local county name and “mass notification system” as search terms will usually quickly provide a resource for local emergency information.

  • Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) sends wildfire emergency alerts and power outage alerts to residents who have provided contact information by setting up an account at 

Fire Alarms

Fire alarms signal to occupants to immediately evacuate the building and proceed to an Emergency Assembly Point (EAP) through audio alarms and flashing strobes. Always assume a fire alarm is a real alarm and respond accordingly. You should evacuate in a calm but quick manner. You should familiarize yourself with the location of your assigned EAP, fire extinguishers near your workspace, fire alarm pull stations and closest emergency exits. 

The first person to spot a fire should activate the building’s alarm system through a pull station. Leave the building immediately and remain at the Emergency Assembly Point (EAP). Do not under any circumstances re-enter the building, until you have been told it is safe to re-enter the building by emergency personnel. 

University Emergency Information Hotlines

Much like the University emergency website, information hotlines will carry information for the Stanford community about an emergency situation. 

  • The main information line for the University is (650) 725-5555.
  • Parents, friends, and emergency contacts outside of the Stanford area can call 1-844-ALERTSU (1-844-253-7878) for more information during an emergency.
  • From abroad, individuals can call +1-602-241-6769.

Some of our partner organizations also maintain their own Information lines containing information specifically about their organization.

  • The Stanford Health Care information line is (650) 498-8888.
  • The Stanford Linear Accelerator information line is (877) 447-7522.

Radio Station KZSU

KZSU FM 90.1 is the campus-run radio station. KZSU will broadcast emergency reports during major emergencies on campus.

Local Community Radio Stations

For information about the greater San Francisco Bay Area, the US Department of Homeland Security can activate the Emergency Alert System (EAS) through broadcast radio and television.  These community alerts are broadcast over the following local radio stations:

  • KCBS – 740 AM
  • KGO – 810 AM

These stations broadcast emergency information for the entire Bay Area.  Broadcasts will not include Stanford specific information and instructions.

Stanford Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook Accounts

Stanford may also post information on official Stanford social media channels although the most up to date information will always be available on the emergency website.