Princeton to close buildings on New Year's, fearing Y2K problems

Wednesday, December 8th 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

PRINCETON, N.J. (AP) -- Princeton University will close its buildings for 48 hours over New Year's, fearing possible blackouts and computer problems from the Y2K computer bug. It also will disconnect its computer system from the Internet for a seven-hour period around midnight Jan. 1.

From 1 p.m. on Dec. 31 to 1 p.m. on Jan. 2, only members of a Y2K contingency team, essential public safety officers and professors conducting certain research projects will be allowed to enter administrative and academic buildings, the school's public safety director, Jerrold Witsil, said in a memo to university employees last week. Professors working on approved projects will be able to keep working when the clock strikes midnight.

Even though the school will be closed from Dec. 17 until Jan. 3for winter recess, students who won't be going home will be allowed to stay in their dormitory rooms. Employees have been encouraged to unplug nonessential devices like fax machines and television sets to conserve electricity and protect against power surges. The university has said it is Y2K compliant and that the shutdown is only a precaution.