Chapter 22 – Extreme Weather Protocol

(President 3/18/91; amended 9/93; 12/01; 4/11; 7/1/17)

22.1 General Policy


Whenever possible, the University continues to function during inclement weather. Regularly scheduled classes meet to the extent that students and faculty are able to travel to campus and attend classes. Units of the University providing essential services must remain open and in operation. These include University Hospitals & Clinics, Dental Clinics, Campus Safety, University Housing and Dining, State Hygienic Laboratory, and Facilities Management. Staff in these units will be expected to make every reasonable effort to report to work. Administrative functions on the campus continue to the extent that faculty, staff, and administrators can travel to and conduct business on campus. Individuals should use good judgment and avoid serious risks in traveling to campus or in attending classes.

22.2 Procedure for Postponing or Canceling University Activities

When weather conditions are so extreme that central administration decides it is necessary to postpone or cancel any University activity, the public will be notified as follows: the Vice President for External Relations (or designee) will inform the relevant administrators in The University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics, College of Dentistry, Oakdale Campus, Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, and Continuing Education and make a public announcement on the status of University activities except for announcements concerning the University Hospitals & Clinics and the University Dental Clinic which will be made by the UIHC Joint Office for Marketing and Communications and the College of Dentistry. If cancellations are to be announced, care will be taken to make a public announcement at the earliest possible time.

22.3 Attendance During Extreme Weather Conditions

(Amended 12/01; 7/1/17)

University employees will be expected to make every reasonable effort to report to work as scheduled, even in severe weather conditions. When provided advanced warning, employees are expected to anticipate difficulties and delays in transportation. Upon evaluation of their individual circumstances, employees are expected to make reasonable judgments to avoid serious risks when traveling to and from work. Employees are encouraged to actively communicate with their supervisor or other proper authority regarding their timeliness and attendance during extreme weather conditions, in order to assure proper staffing. When delayed, employees may be expected to report to work as soon as they become available, unless otherwise excused by their supervisor, in order to meet operational needs. Supervisory staff are expected to utilize their discretion reasonably and humanely in relation to this policy.

Absences due to severe weather conditions may be addressed in the following manner, as applicable:

  1. Employees may be authorized to perform work at home or an alternate location, to the extent such is available, practical, and feasible, and provided appropriate accountability.
  2. Employees may be authorized to make up the time absent through an alternate work schedule within the same work week.
  3. Employees may utilize accrued compensatory time (merit) or accrued annual leave (vacation), if available, to remain in pay status, or be placed on leave without pay.

(See also III-22 Absences.)