What You Can Do
Working together, we can all foster a safer climate on and near campus. As individuals, please observe these tips to help ensure your personal safety and security.
Safety tips when walking or running
- At night, walk with a friend whenever possible. If you have no one to walk with, call the University’s campus escort service at 612-624-WALK (9255).
- Call the Gopher Chauffeur for a ride. This a free transportation service that provides University of Minnesota Twin Cities students with safe rides on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. To schedule a ride, call 612-388-6911.
- Avoid shortcuts. Take well-traveled and well-lit walkways.
- Be alert and aware of the people and environment around you. Don’t walk with ear buds in and music on. Avoid using your mobile phone while walking. These distractions make you an easier target.
- Use good judgment if a stranger asks to borrow your mobile phone.
- Ensure your mobile phone has location services activated. If it's stolen, this will help police attempt to recover it. iPhone users need to install the Find My iPhone app for this purpose. Similar apps for Android and other operating systems are also available.
- Carry minimal amounts of valuables.
- Trust your instincts. If someone makes you uncomfortable, even in daylight, do what is necessary to move away.
- If you feel that someone is following you, go immediately to a nearby location where there are more people.
Safety tips when driving and parking
- Keep your vehicle locked at all times when it is parked and when you are driving it. Keep the windows rolled up high enough so that an intruder cannot reach inside.
- When you return to your vehicle, look around it and inside it before you get in.
- Keep your vehicle well maintained. Make sure you have enough gasoline to reach your destination.
- If you will be returning to your vehicle at night, park in a place that will be well lit when you return. Consider calling 612-624-WALK (9255) if you are worried about returning to your car at night on or near campus.
- If your vehicle breaks down, remain inside with the doors locked. If anyone stops to help, ask them to call a tow truck or the police for you.
- Never pick up hitchhikers. This is extremely dangerous.
- Keep valuables (laptops, purses, wallets, briefcases, etc.) out of sight. Lock bags and packages in the car's trunk. (Never leave valuables unattended anywhere.)
Safety tips when biking
- Always lock your bike and use only a U-Style lock. Bike theft is one of the most common and preventable campus crimes.
- Watch for turning cars.
- Stay off sidewalks.
- Don’t run red lights.
- Wear a helmet and use a light.
- Learn about campus bike boxes.
- Learn the rules of the road.
Safety tips for the new light rail line
On Saturday, June 14, the METRO Green Line will begin service. Three stations will serve the campus and more than 225 light rail trains will pass through campus each weekday. Buses are already running on the re-opened Washington Ave and trains are being tested, so follow these important safety tips immediately:
- Never walk on the tracks.
- Obey all warning signs and signals.
- Cross the tracks only at designated crossings and with the lights.
- Listen for train bells and horns.
- Always look both ways before crossing the tracks.
- Walk your bicycles on rail platforms, near the benches and tables and across pedestrian crossings.
- Use the green bike boxes to turn left across traffic. (See informational video.)
More information about the new light rail line and safety can be found here.
Tips for securing your mobile devices
Simple steps you can take to protect your devices and to track them if they become lost or stolen.
U safety resources
Below are some additional resources to promote campus safety:
- The Step Up campaign provides information about how you can help keep your friends and yourself safe.
- The University’s Aurora Center for Advocacy and Education provides crisis intervention and advocacy services to victims/survivors of sexual and relationship violence, harassment, and stalking. Its 24-hour help line is 612-626-9111.
- TXT-U, the University of Minnesota emergency notification text messaging system.
- Wide-ranging safety and security measures in residence halls and apartments.
- 20 Code Blue Phones located throughout the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses for an immediate connection to a 911 operator at the University Police station.
- 267 emergency intercom buttons are located in the stairways of most parking structures throughout the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses. Callers are immediately connected to an operator at the University’s Police Security Emergency Command Center (PSECC).
- 200 yellow phones for emergency, medical, and safety-related calls.
- 1,700 security cameras monitored 24 hours a day.
- Nearly 200 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) located in buildings across campus.
- For non-emergency or general information, the University of Minnesota Police Department can be reached at 612-624-COPS (2677).
- Anonymous tip line: Call 612-626-TIPS (8477) and leave a message with the necessary information.
- Crime alerts: Delivered in accordance with the federal Cleary Act, crime alerts issued by UMPD serve as an important tool for sharing information, increasing awareness and promoting safety among the University community. The Cleary Act applies only to colleges and universities.
If you are calling 911 from the Twin Cities campus, you should be connected directly to the University of Minnesota Police Department (UMPD). If not, tell the 911 operator that you are calling from the University of Minnesota and ask to be transferred to the U Police.