Using Social Media like Twitter during Disasters…

Social media can be a great way to have the most current information during a disaster scenario like the floods we had in September – particularly if you’re stranded or without power. Even if you have a battery-powered radio, news updates can be few and far between on radio, and many times the information you receive can already be out-of-date.

During the floods, I subscribed to the BoulderOEM twitter feed (Boulder Office of Emergency Management). I was able to keep myself up-to-date with current events, advice, and information.

At one point, my folks who live in Longmont, had been told to evacuate their home in north Longmont, which they eventually did. Not less than an hour later I read an update on the BoulderOEM twitter feed about those evacuations. The evacuation for their neighborhood had been retracted and the people in their neighborhood were allowed to go home. I immediately send this information to them, and no one at their evacuation center was really aware of this information yet.

So, despite following the daily trivial interactions of celebrities, Twitter can be a great way to stay connected with the source of good and accurate information, which is very important in times like that. And while this is not really a new idea to many who already use Twitter, it might be a good reason for the rest of us to start using it.

In addtion, the campus also has an Emergency Alert service which will automatically send you a text message with up-to-date information regarding all sorts of scenarios.


  • Sign up for your local city’s OEM twitter feed (Both work city and home city if they are far enough apart)
  • Download Twitter App to your smartphone
  • Sign up for the Campus Emergency Alert service:

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