Immediate Emergency Response and Evacuation Procedures
The College Emergency Response Handbook includes information about Incident Teams; College operating status parameters; incident priorities and performance expectations; shelter-in-place and evacuation guidelines; along with local contingency and continuity planning requirements. College departments are responsible for developing contingency plans and continuity of operations plans for their staff and areas of responsibility. The College conducts numerous emergency response exercises each year, such as table top exercises, field exercises, and tests of the emergency notification systems on campus. These tests are designed to assess and evaluate the emergency plans and capabilities of the institution.
Evergreen police officers and supervisors have received training in Incident Command and Responding to Critical Incidents on campus. When a serious incident occurs that causes an immediate threat to the campus, the first responders to the scene are usually Evergreen PD, TCSO and the McLane Fire Department and they typically respond and work together to manage the incident. Depending on the nature of the incident, other Evergreen departments and other local or federal agencies could also be involved in responding to the incident. General information about the emergency response and evacuation procedures for Evergreen is publicized each year as part of the institution’s Clery Act compliance efforts, and that information is available on the Evergreen website.
Active Shooter/Armed Intruder
An active shooter or armed assault on campus may involve one or more individual’s intent on causing physical harm to students, staff and faculty by the use of firearms or other deadly weapons such as a knife, a bomb or other harmful devices.
Immediate Individual Protective Actions – Secure in Place
- Try to remain calm.
- Quickly clear students, staff and faculty from the hallways.
- Close and lock all doors to private offices and classrooms, turn off the lights, any audio-visual equipment and hide.
- If your door cannot be locked, begin stacking and interlocking all available tables and chairs in the doorway to create an obstacle.
- Have everyone get down on the floor, up against a solid interior wall, stay away from windows and doors and Secure in Place.
- If you are in the open and unable to find a room to lockdown in, run away from the sounds of the gunshots or where the problem is and get out any way possible.
- Keep quiet and act as if no one is in the room.
- Do not answer the door.
- Call 911 or Ext. 6140 if possible and give your location and any information you may have about the intruder(s).
- Wait patiently for any guidance from uniformed police officers.
If you are caught out in the open or exposed area and you cannot get into a classroom or office you must decide upon a course of action:
Look for a safe and secure hiding area. Once in place try to remain calm. Stay hidden until you can make contact with emergency personnel.
If you think you can safely make it out of the area, then do so. If you decide to run, do not run in a straight line. Attempt to keep objects (trees, vehicles, trash cans, etc.) between you and the hostile person. When away from immediate area of danger, summon help and warn others.
If the intruder is causing death or physical injury to others and you are unable to run or hide you may choose to assume a prone position and lay as still as possible.
Your last option if you are caught in the open and are in close proximity of the intruder is to fight back. This is dangerous and not recommended, but depending on your situation this could be your only option. Do anything you can in an attempt to disable or slow down the aggressor. You can use many types of items as weapons: books, trash cans or other small items found in an office environment.
Notification to Students, Staff and Faculty
- College Email System
- Voice Message to all Campus Phones (in progress)
- Screen Pop-ups on all Computers
- Phone Calls to All Building Managers
- PA System to all Academic Buildings (in progress)
- Siren/Loud Speaker (Big Voice)
Police Response to Armed Intruder/Active Shooter
- Officers will immediately respond and confront the armed intruder
- Police at the same time will notify surrounding law enforcement jurisdictions for mutual aid
- Responding agencies will assist with securing the campus and assisting with the evacuation of students, staff and faculty
Emergency Evacuation Procedures
Students should learn the locations of the emergency exits in the buildings and are provided guidance about the direction they should travel when exiting each facility for a short-term building evacuation. Evergreen does not tell residents in advance about the designated locations for long-term evacuations because those decisions are affected by time of day, location of the building being evacuated, the availability of the various designated emergency gathering locations on campus, and other factors such as the location and nature of the threat. In both cases, Evergreen PD, Evergreen Staff and/or Residential and Dining (RAD) staff on the scene will communicate information to students regarding the developing situation or any evacuation status changes.
Students receive information about evacuation and shelter-in-place procedures during their first floor meetings and during other educational sessions that they can participate in throughout the year. The RAD Staff members are trained in these procedures as well and act as an on-going resource for the students living in residential facilities. ERT conducts announced and unannounced drills and exercises each year and conducts follow-through activities designed for assessment and evaluation of emergency plans and capabilities. ERT & Evergreen PD coordinates announced and unannounced evacuation drills each year, to test the emergency response and evacuation procedures, and to assess and evaluate the emergency evacuation plans and capabilities.
Evergreen will publish a summary of its emergency response and evacuation procedures in conjunction with at least one drill or exercise each calendar year.
Shelter-in-Place Procedures –
What it Means to “Shelter-in-Place”
If an incident occurs and the buildings or areas around you become unstable, or if the air outdoors becomes dangerous due to toxic or irritating substances, it is usually safer to stay indoors, because leaving the area may expose you to that danger. Thus, to “shelter-in-place” means to make a shelter of the building that you are in, and with a few adjustments this location can be made even safer and more comfortable until it is safe to go outside.
Basic “Shelter-in-Place” Guidance
If an incident occurs and the building you are in is not damaged, stay inside in an interior room until you are told it is safe to come out. If your building is damaged, take your personal belongings (purse, wallet, etc.) and follow the evacuation procedures for your building (close and lock your door, proceed to the nearest exit, and use the stairs instead of the elevators). Once you have evacuated, seek shelter at the nearest College building quickly. If police or fire department personnel are on the scene, follow their directions.
How You Will Know to “Shelter-in-Place”
A shelter-in-place notification may come from several sources, including Evergreen PD, RAD Staff members, other College employees, the federal or WA State government, WSP, or other authorities utilizing the College’s emergency communications tools.
How to “Shelter–in-Place”
No matter where you are, the basic steps of shelter-in-place will generally remain the same. Should the need ever arise, follow these steps, unless instructed otherwise by local emergency personnel:
- If you are inside, stay where you are. Collect any emergency shelter-in-place supplies and a telephone to be used in case of emergency. If you are outdoors, proceed into the closest building quickly or follow instructions from emergency personnel on the scene.
- Locate a room to shelter inside. It should be:
-An interior room
-Above ground level
-Without windows or with the least number of windows.
If there is a large group of people inside a particular building, several rooms maybe necessary.
- Shut and lock all windows and close exterior doors.
- Turn off air conditioners, heaters, and fans.
- Close vents to ventilation systems as you are able. (College staff will turn off the ventilation as quickly as possible.)
- Make a list of the people with you and ask someone (RAD Staff, faculty, or other staff) to call the list into Evergreen PD so they know where you are sheltering. If only students are present, one of the students should call in the list.
- Turn on a radio or TV if available and listen for further instructions.
- Make yourself comfortable.