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UW police alerts to be sent in six languages

MADISON (WKOW) -- In perhaps a first for a university in the U.S., UW-Madison now has the ability to send emergency alerts in six different languages.

On Friday, Jan. 31 at 1 p.m., UWPD will conduct a campus-wide test of the WiscAlert system, which will include a follow-up translated message.

The languages are English, Spanish, Hmong, Tibetan, Chinese and Nepali.

While some large cities already send emergency information in several languages, UW-Madison believes it will be the first college campus in the country to do this.

When there are emergencies on the UW–Madison campus, UWPD sends WiscAlerts (emergency alert messages) to the campus community if the emergency is currently happening and people are able to protect themselves.

UW will now send two WiscAlerts in most cases. The first WiscAlert will give general information about the emergency and safety advice in English.

The second WiscAlert will have a link to a message translated into five different languages to reach more nonnative English speakers in the community.

The translated messages give general safety information with instructions to ask a trusted person for more details about the emergency.

Click here for an example of a translated WiscAlert.

For more information about WiscAlerts and how to sign up, click here.

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