Campus announces revised residence hall access, safety precautions
The Super Bowl carries a massive amount of excitement for football fans, particularly for those whose teams are vying for the crown. For UMass Amherst, that impact has become all too familiar in recent years with the success of local franchises like the New England Patriots and Boston Red Sox.
One year ago, the campus dealt with post-Super Bowl disturbances that led to a number of injuries, individuals needing treatment at local hospitals and seven students being arrested. Following the result of last year's game, some 2,000 people flooded the Southwest Area of the UMass campus and ultimately caused more than $2,500 in damage, mostly to bathrooms.
This year -- with New England again in the Super Bowl -- the university is trying to get out in front of the fandom and madness with altered campus policies and safety protocols. As reported by the Daily Hampshire Gazette, an email has been circulated to UMass students alerting them to changes on campus ahead of the Super Bowl.
One of the new restrictions in place this year will be access to dormitories. Starting at noon on Sunday and running through 8:00 a.m. Monday, students living on campus will be able to sign in up to four fellow students from the same residential area to their dorms, but not from another area of the campus or from off campus. Security desks will also be staffed starting at noon on Sunday.
UMass has also reserved the right to, if circumstances impacting safety and security dictate, adjust the guest policy by curtailing or ending guest registration by building or residential area.
The Amherst Fire Department will also be using the modified safety protocol that was in place during the World Series last fall. Following the Red Sox victory, another 2,000 revelers gathered outside UMass' Southwest residential towers, though remained largely peaceful and celebratory.
Beginning at 5:00 p.m. Sunday, more than an hour before kickoff, the fire department will have 13 firefighters on duty, and all five ambulances in service. That is the usual strength on a Friday and Saturday night in the early fall and spring.