The University of Wisconsin tested the WiscAlerts text messaging system Wednesday for the first time since the program launched last spring.

UW Police Department Lt. Michael Newton said 13,470 texts were sent out to registered students.

Preliminary reports show the test had a 70 to 75 percent success rate. Several students failed to receive the message on time and several cell phone providers failed to deliver the message.

Officials now have to wait to hear from a private communications firm to determine the problem with cell phone companies.

“We plan on doing at least one test a semester, and based on the information we collect from this, we might schedule another test soon after the cellular companies tell us what happened with the messages,” Newton said.

The text messaging system is a part of the WiscAlert program, which includes mass e-mails, mass voicemails and a social networking group on Facebook.

Text messaging will be reserved for urgent issues in which UW is requesting immediate action.

Meanwhile, UW released its annual safety report Wednesday, which showed on-campus burglaries rose from 157 in 2006 to 167 in 2007, and up from 22 in 2005.

Associate Dean of Students Kevin Helmkamp said the number may have been an anomaly.

“There has been a definitive increase in that sort of crime,” Helmkamp said. “Whether or not it’s truly reflective or there are other factors involved in the increase, we’ve yet to determine them.”

Students were informed of the report via e-mail Wednesday morning; the report will also be available on the website of the Offices of the Dean of Students.

Helmkamp said he hopes the report makes students realize there is a certain risk to being a student in Madison.

“By and large, it’s not a high risk,” Helmkamp said. “But it’s important to maintain the responsibility to watch your environment and watch out for your friends.”

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