Ohio State still improving safety measures nearly 2 years after campus attack


Ohio State University said it's still making safety changes to better protect students, staff, and faculty nearly two-years after a terror attack on campus.

Director of Emergency Management and Fire Prevention Robert Armstrong said one of the most noticeable changes includes the addition of locks on classroom doors.

The university said it's also improved communication options in order for students to receive Buckeye Alerts faster.

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The attack unfolded on November 28, 2016, just before 10 a.m. when authorities said Abdul Razak Ali Artan rammed his car into a crowd of people and then began slashing at victims with a knife.

The attack sent 13 people to the hospital. Artan was shot and killed by an Ohio State police officer.

Ohio State rapidly sent Buckeye Alert text messages warning students and staff to shelter in place, and to run, hide, fight.

"We sent 10 text messages out that day, 95,000 texts for each message. So, we were approaching one million text messages that we sent out in about a 6 to 7 hour period," Armstrong said.

Armstrong said the first three alerts were sent in quick succession, which may have delayed reception times.

Ohio State is now urging students, faculty, and staff to sign up for a free app called Rave Guardian which can deliver Buckeye Alerts in a fraction of the time.

"It will get a Buckeye Alert out to the end user in probably about 5 seconds rather than 5-to-10 minutes," said Armstrong.

Anyone can sign up for the Ohio State app or the Franklin County Emergency Management Agency ALERT to approve push notifications and receive Buckeye Alerts warning of a threat on campus.

Ohio State said an after-action review of the attack and feedback from the community raised questions about why classroom doors don't have locks.

Ohio State is now in the process of installing locks but said the added safety measure will take time.

"There are thousands of classrooms and so our goal is to get the locks on a couple hundred every year," said Armstrong.

In the meantime, Ohio State produced an updated online training video to teach students what to do if they find themselves facing a threat on campus. To view the video, click here.

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