Touring through the tunnels. For your first time or out of habit.
Getting around the UA tunnel system can be great fun! But while you’re down there I suggest being prepared and preparing the new-bees that may be accompanying you.
But first let’s look at basic security. The UA tunnels have security. If things are locked, that means you shouldn’t be there, right? right. Be aware of the presence of the multitude of campus police and security, as well as any other campus employees who may call the police. Due to the escalation of campus attacks, rapes, stalkers, etc there is a very large number of vigilant citizens out to harass the benign rule breaker. Be weary of all people and always have a plan for cover story, alibi, and general escape. There are also alarms on doors and motion detectors in the tunnels. Be aware. However, we’ve also found that the first time you’re caught ‘trespassing,’ yes this is trespassing, it’s a warning. Simply be sure to not have any weapons, spray paint, etc. etc. that would get you in trouble. Don’t be dumb.
Moving on. Things to consider before going underground.
1. If it’s your first time, get yourself a head lamp and mag-lite and do it the old fashioned way. Walk through the pitch black underground with just you and your spot. This not only adds to the thrill, but also helps to ensure you’ll be quiet and go unnoticed. However, if you want to use the lights, there are normal switches periodically through out the system. They glow when they’re off so you can spot them fairly easily. They will also be paired one is to turn off the lights from where you came the other to turn the lights on to where you’re going. Remember that at night, light emanating from a man hole is fairly obvious, as is laughing, shouting – etc.
2. Make sure you’ve got water with you. The tunnels are often referred to as steam tunnels. Along with the tele-comm they carry the heating steam to all the buildings, remember? That means the tunnels are incredibly hot and if you’re not drinking water you can get yourself in trouble quite quickly.
3. The tunnels are quite extensive, they go to every building on campus, so make sure you’ve got a good sense of direction before you venture down. You may want to look at a map ahead of time, or perhaps create your own map while you’re down there – i.e. – “we started out walking East – then came to a fork, North or South, we went North and noted writing at the fork that said the building names ….”. Almost every building is labeled, so keep your eyes open and read the walls, the pipes, the switches, or the blatant signs that are down there. Don’t go wriggling someplace you’re libel to get stuck in unless you’ve got a buddy with you or a radio. Cell phones may not work down below.
In general use the buddy system so you protect yourself if anything goes wrong – besides it’s always better to tell the story about you and your buddy sitting on the curb with the cops anyway, right?
Well, I suppose once you do anything you’re officially a pro at it, right? That was the standard in days past. In fact, it’s been a fun way to spend a late night with new friends, to challenge their willingness to live on the edge. Take them deep, dark, and dirty, scare the goods out of them, and see if you’re still friends when you pop out of a man hole someplace in the middle of campus. So long as your prudent to your safety and security and you have fun without damaging property, you’re good to go.
*These details are fictitious. This post in no way condones the violation of federal or state laws, vandalism, trespassing, or misuse of property. Copyright 2009 John Patrick Mizell