Emergency Preparedness

Drop Shadow

Evacuation Procedures

General Information

Be Prepared

Know the exit routes from your office, floor, and building. Review the EMERGENCY EVACUATION PLANS that are posted inside the main entrances, stairways, and by elevators in your building. Know the location of the nearest exit and an alternate one in case one is blocked. Also know the location of the designated Assembly Area, the location of fire extinguishers and fire alarms pull stations for your building. Learn how to use a fire extinguisher before a fire. To arrange for hands on fire extinguisher training call the Environmental Health & Safety Office at extension 2595.

In the event of an emergency, faculty members, residence life personnel and supervisors have the responsibility to give instructions to students and staff; close and lock doors; and provide other safety and first aid measures unless otherwise directed by the Public Safety Department or other emergency personnel.

…A Building is Evacuated

  1. Fire alarms or verbal notice will be used to sound the evacuation.
  2. Call USD Public Safety at extension 2222 from a safe location.
  3. Remain calm, walk quickly but do not run.
  4. Exit via stairway, DO NOT USE ELEVATORS.
  5. Follow instructions of the Building, Floor Safety Representatives and Public Safety Department or other emergency personnel.
  6. Seek out and give as needed assistance to any disabled persons in the area.
  7. If time permits, turn off the power to all electrical equipment and close doors.
  8. Go to the designated Assembly Area for your building. These are located outside away from the building. Keep roadways and walkways clear for emergency vehicles.
  9. WAIT FOR INSTRUCTIONS from emergency personnel. DO NOT RE-ENTER THE BUILDING until instructed to do so by the Public Safety Department or other emergency personnel.

If emergency situations not covered by this information occur, call the appropriate emergency number for instructions.


Resident Students

  1. Staging
    1. Whenever there is a Residence Hall evacuation, leave the Resident Hall quickly but in an orderly manner to the initial staging and triage area.
    2. Residential Life Staff will complete initial check-ins, determine who is missing and move residents to the evacuation site, or other areas.
    3. If the campus needs to be evacuated immediately, those Resident Students without transportation will be directed to the pre-determined staging area. Those students with transportation will be asked to assist with carpooling/transporting those students off campus who do not have transportation. Residential Life will be present to assist with the evacuations area and to assist with coordinating transportation to the pre-determined off campus holding area.
  2. Temporary Shelter/Holding Area
    1. On Campus: On campus temporary shelter has been pre-determined.
    2. Off Campus: Off campus temporary holding areas have been pre-determined.
  3. Transportation
    1. Resident student carpooling is strongly encouraged to expedite and assist in the efficiency of the evacuation of campus.   To supplement those Resident Student that do not have transportation, the University’s busses or trams will provide additional transportation to the off campus holding area.

Please contact your Resident Assistant or Community Director for any questions you may have prior to an evacuation event occurs.

Faculty/Staff/Commuter Students

  1. Staging
    1. Whenever there is a non-residential building evacuation, leave the building quickly but in an orderly manner to the initial staging and triage area that is the pre-determined assembly area as listed on the Building Evacuation Assembly Areas.
    2. Wait for further instructions from Public Safety, Emergency Personnel, or the Building Safety Representative/s.
    3. In cases where the incident expands and the campus needs to be evacuated immediately, Public Safety will activate the mass notification system to notify Faculty, Staff and Commuter Students to seek shelter off campus.  Those Faculty, Staff, or Commuter Students that do not have immediate transportation off campus and are unable to carpool with other community members, please go to the nearest unaffected Resident Hall staging area for transportation assistance.

Please stay in contact with local media sources for information regarding specific local evacuation centers/shelters if you are unable to go home or stay with friends or other family.

Evacuation of Disabled Persons

Visually Impaired Persons:

In the event of an emergency, tell the person the nature of the emergency and offer to guide them to the nearest emergency exit. Have the person take your elbow to escort them. (This is the preferred method when acting as a “sighted guide.”)

Hearing Impaired Persons:

Two methods of warning are:

  1. Writing a note, telling what the emergency is and the nearest evacuation route. For example: “FIRE-go out the rear door to the right and down- NOW!”
  2. Turn light switch on and off to gain attention and then indicate with gestures what is happening and what to do.

Persons using crutches, canes, or walkers:

Carrying options include using a two-person lock arm position or having the person sit on a sturdy chair, preferably one with arms. If time permits, call Public Safety at ext. 2222 or (619) 260-2222 for carrying chair.

Non-Ambulatory Persons (persons in wheelchairs):

There are many considerations when moving a person in a wheelchair. Wheelchairs have movable parts; some are not designed to withstand the stress of lifting. You may have to remove the chair batteries. Life support equipment may be attached. Lifting a person with minimal ability to move may be dangerous to their well being. Always consult with the person in the chair regarding:

  1. The number of people necessary for assistance.
  2. Ways of being removed from the wheelchair.
  3. Whether a seat cushion or pad should be brought along with him/her if they are removed from the chair.
  4. Whether to extend or bend extremities when lifting because of pain, catheter, spasticity, braces, etc.
  5. Being carried forward or backward on a flight of stairs.
  6. The type of assistance necessary after evacuation.

Proper Lifting Techniques

  1. Correct Position:
    One foot a little ahead of the other.
    Toes pointed slightly outward.
    Feet about shoulder width apart.
  2. Squat
  3. Lift yourself and load with your legs.