Weather or Other Short-Term Closings

Although Ohio State strives to remain open to ensure continuity of services to students and the public, extreme conditions can warrant the usage of the university’s Weather or Other Short-Term Closing Policy.

A Weather or Other Short-Term Closing refers to an official temporary shutdown of the university due to severe weather, major utility failure or another critical reason in which the duration is less than five days.

Faculty and staff can prepare for instances when it is necessary to cancel classes and/or close offices or clinics by reviewing this policy and taking note of the university’s resources. It is also important for employees to understand their designation as either essential, alternate or standby and be familiar with the policy should extreme conditions warrant a closure.

Essential services remain open, and the Weather or Short-Term Closing Policy does not apply to Ohio State Wexner Medical Center employees. The hospitals are always open; therefore, Health System employees are considered essential and should contact their human resource department for more information.

Disaster Designation

Faculty and staff can view their Disaster Designation in Workday. Go to, click on the cloud icon in the top right, and click the “view profile” button. Click on “job” in the left navigation menu, and then click on “organizations” at the top of the page. You will see your disaster designation in the list.

If you have questions about the disaster designation listed or feel that the designation is incorrect, please contact your manager or HR Consultant.

Disaster designation notifications will be distributed annually to all employees via Workday. This required notification informs employees of their disaster designation per Weather or Other Short-Term Closing Policy 6.15 and Disaster Preparedness and University State of Emergency Policy 6.17. Employees will need to acknowledge the notification by clicking “I agree” and “Submit.”

Preparing for potential closings and checking the status of the university:

  • Register for Buckeye Alerts, the university’s emergency notification system.
  • Review the university’s Weather or Other Short-Term Closing Policy and the policy’s Frequently Asked Questions
  • for additional information, an outline of responsibilities and potential scenarios.
  • Visit, the Department of Public Safety campus status website or call 614-247-7777 for information on university closings.
  • Check your Ohio State email address.
  • Listen to WOSU 89.7 FM, the official media outlet for cancellations.
  • Contact additional resources such as:
    • Transportation and Traffic Management at 614-292-7433 for the current status of campus bus services. You also can find real-time CABS bus arrival information via the Ohio State app.
    • Service2Facilities at 614-292-4357 to notify the university about issues regarding campus buildings or facilities.
    • Department of Public Safety at 614-292-2121 to report unsafe conditions due to ice or snow on campus. The university’s Department of Public Safety also offers a real-time weather forecast online.
    • CampusParc at 614-688-0000 for information about parking and to report potholes/weather-related damage in garages and surface lots.

Plan ahead for winter weather

In the winter, weather issues can close roads and make traveling difficult. Plan accordingly when severe weather occurs and be prepared to give yourself enough time to get to class or work safely. The 130 miles of campus sidewalk and 40 miles of campus roads take nearly six hours to clear one time and our facilities crew will do its best to keep pathways clear. CampusParc will treat parking lots and garages, with garage rooftops remaining open, when possible.

Please remember to take precautions while traveling in winter weather.

  • Plan and allow extra time.
  • Check scheduled activities in advance to make sure there are no changes or cancellations.
  • Dress appropriately for the weather (boots, hat, gloves).
  • While walking, take it slow to avoid slipping.
  • While driving, allow additional distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you.
  • Know your route and pay special attention to changing and/or declining weather conditions.
  • Bridges and garage rooftops freeze more quickly and remain cold longer than pavement at ground level. Exercise caution when driving and walking throughout all levels of the garages.

More information is available on the Transportation and Travel Management website.