Student sitting on a brick pillar while scrolling on phone

Outdoor Warning Sirens

Campus Safety

As part of the University of South Carolina Aiken’s USC Aiken ALERT emergency notification system, the university has three outdoor warning sirens on campus.

These public address speakers / sirens are designed to be heard outdoors only. The same emergency PA message is also transmitted to a receiver in each building generally located in the Building Emergency Coordinator’s (BEC) office.  The BEC will ensure that the appropriate building occupants are notified i.e. “shut and lock all doors; ”  See below for alternative notification methods.

  • Three sirens provide campus “alert” and are located at the tennis court area, Pacer Downs USCA Police station area, and Convocation Center area
  • Solar-powered battery operation of the 3 speakers will keep them in operation even if there is an AC failure
  • Emergency tone alerts will generally be followed by voice messages providing specific instructions
  • Siren tones and messages can be activated from multiple locations on campus using wireless technology
  • The Sirens are mounted on 50 foot painted metal poles and each has a 3 speaker array with digital and live voice capability for “notification”
  • The System will be available 365 days a year 24 hours a day
  • A computer controlled system does period self-checks to make sure the outdoor campus speakers are always fully operational
  • There are 2 fixed command and control stations, the first in the University Police Department located in Pacer Downs and the second is located in the Alumni House.
  • Live PA announcements can be made via phone, with proper security and codes
  • The voice message will also be transmitted to building monitors for Building Emergency Coordinator information
  • First Responders, generally USCA Police, can give live instructions over the  speakers

In the event of an emergency which urgently threatens the safety of persons outdoors, the University may sound the sirens. The alert tones are very loud and distinct and should be easily heard by anyone who is outdoors on campus.

The alert tone may / may not be followed by voice instructions. Regardless if you can comprehend the voice instructions, the default action anytime the siren is sounded is to: Take shelter in the nearest building and seek further information.

Warning Sounds

Examples of the warning alert sounds which may be played:

Weather Emergencies

Tornado Warning


Flash Flood Warning


Hurricane Warning


Weather Alert


General Emergency Conditions

General Emergency


General Announcement


Evacuation Warning


All Clear


The University may also use the speakers for other non-emergency or testing purposes. For example,  Westminster Chimes