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Emergency Response Guide

Like any other institution, ASU is potentially subject to man-made or natural events that could threaten its core academic mission. The university has developed plans and procedures as a proactive approach to emergency preparedness. University police are trained and equipped to respond to and neutralize emergency incidents. The ASU community also plays a role in ensuring the safety of our campus by being familiar with individual responsibilities with regard to notifications and implementing emergency actions.

This Emergency Response Guide is designed to help faculty, staff and students understand how to respond during an emergency. This guide can also be viewed in a pdf format. For more information regarding campus emergency preparedness, please contact the emergency management coordinator at 325-942-2180.

Communication and Planning

  • Emergency Communications

    ASUAlert is the primary method used to rapidly communicate incidents that pose a safety or security threat to the university. An “all clear” will be issued once the incident has been resolved.

    Emergency Notifications

    Emergency notifications may be issued for a specific facility or the entire campus, based on the scope of the incident. Notifications will be brief and normally include required actions.

    • Code Blue is the terminology used to indicate an emergency exists that poses a significant threat to the campus, and that immediate action is required.
    • ASU’s emergency website is used to provide additional notifications, information updates and/or emergency guidance to the campus as the situation develops.

    Campus Warnings

    These types of incidents may necessitate issuing a campus warning:

    • Severe weather includes tornados, snow/ice storms, flash floods or similar events, and may direct people to seek shelter or take other actions.
    • Evacuations are normally implemented due to a gas leak or similar threat, and may impact a facility or large area of the campus.
    • Campus closures are implemented due to inclement weather or other unforeseeable events that disrupt campus operations.
    • Special alerts are issued for unusual circumstances or events that impact the campus community, such as street detours or parking lot closures.
  • Emergency Contact Numbers
    Emergency Contact Numbers
    Department Address Phone After Hours Phone
    University Police 1702 W. Avenue N 325-942-2071 325-942-2071
    Fire Department   9-1-1 or 9-9-1-1 9-1-1 or 9-9-1-1
    Emergency Medical Services   9-1-1 or 9-9-1-1 9-1-1 or 9-9-1-1
    University Clinic 1901 S. Johnson St. 325-942-2171 NA
    Counseling Center 1901 S. Johnson St. 325-942-2171 325-942-2071
    Emergency Management 1635 Vanderventer St. 325-942-2180 325-942-2071
    Environmental Health and Safety 1635 Vanderventer St. 325-942-2180 325-942-2071
    Housing and Residential Programs 2675 W. Avenue N 325-942-2035 325-942-2071
    Student Life 1910 Rosemont Drive 325-942-2191 NA
    Facilities Management 1635 Vanderventer St. 325-942-2355 325-942-2071
    Communications and Marketing 2501 W. Avenue N 325-942-2248 NA

    Emergency Notification Procedures

    • Callers who do not have local phone service will need to dial the area code 325 prior to the number.
    • Call 9-1-1 for the fire department or emergency medical services, and dial 9 first when using campus phones.
    • The University Police Department should be notified for most incidents occurring on campus.
    • 16 emergency call boxes are strategically located across the campus.
  • Emergency Action Plan

    The Emergency Action Plan (EAP) contains procedural guidance designed to preserve life and minimize property damage during emergencies. EAPs are specifically developed for each facility and implemented by Building Emergency Response Team (BERT) members and Residential Programs staff (e.g., area coordinators and hall directors). The following is a summary of the EAPs that are used to manage incidents affecting the university:

    • Evacuation is directed in the event of a fire or similar threat emanating from within a facility. Larger areas or campus zones may be affected, based on the nature and severity of the hazard.
    • Shelter-in-Place is directed in the event of severe weather or similar threat emanating from outside the facility.
    • Lockdown is a temporary sheltering technique that is used to limit exposure to an “active shooter” or similar threat. When alerted to lockdown, occupants of any facility within the affected area should lock all doors and windows, converting the facility into a large “safe room.”

    Evacuation, shelter-in-place and lockdown can affect the entire campus or a single facility, depending on the nature and scope of the threat.

  • Evacuations

    Evacuations are normally directed by University Police or a BERT member due to a perceived hazard, such as a fire or bomb threat, in a facility or area that threatens the welfare of those in close proximity. Evacuees should move at least 300 feet upwind from the hazard and not re-enter the facility or area until the “all clear” is issued. University Police may direct the mode (on-foot or by vehicle) and the direction of travel.

    Facility Evacuation

    BERT and Residential Programs staff members are responsible for directing evacuations of their assigned facilities when there is a perceived hazard or when directed by University Police.

    • Direct occupants to use the nearest safe stairwell/exit to evacuate.
    • Ensure occupants move to the assembly area and are accounted for.
    • Report the status of the evacuation to University Police via emergency call box.
    • Help keep parking lots and streets clear for emergency responders.
    • Ensure people do not enter the facility until the “all clear” is received.

    Zone Evacuation

    The campus is divided into three zones, and evacuation may be directed for one or all of the zones based on the nature and severity of the incident. If a zone evacuation is directed, personnel may seek shelter in facilities in one of the unaffected zones. If the entire campus is directed to evacuate, University Police will direct the mode and the direction in which the campus should evacuate.

Criminal Activity

  • Crime

    The University Police Department (UPD) relies on the campus community to assist in crime prevention by reporting suspicious persons and activities. Please follow the steps below as they apply to your situation.

    Victims of a Crime

    • Immediately contact UPD at 325-942-2071.
    • Remain calm and relay the facts:
      • Exact location, time and what occurred
      • Description of the suspect(s)
      • Description of weapon(s)
      • Suspect direction of travel (on foot/vehicle)
      • Description and license plate number of vehicle

    Witnesses of a Crime

    • If possible, obtain the following information (as applicable) and report to UPD:
      • Location of the crime scene
      • Name of the victim(s)
      • Description of the injury(s) sustained
      • Description of the weapon(s) involved
      • Names of witnesses
    • Do not disturb anything in the area/room that may be considered evidence.
    • Assist officers when they arrive by supplying updated information regarding the incident.
  • Active Shooter

    Campus shooting incidents are highly unpredictable. A Code Blue emergency notification will be issued instructing the affected facilities/area or entire campus to implement lockdown procedures. The proper reaction is dependent on the situation and a number of circumstances but the general concepts are: 1) run, 2) hide, or 3) fight. The following depicts these concepts and what to expect during an active shooter situation.

    Run Concept

    The best option for survival is to escape. Leave the facility/area immediately, if safe to do so, and try to accomplish the following actions:

    • Quickly and quietly move away from the danger.
    • Notify anyone you encounter to exit the area.
    • Call University Police to report the incident and provide the following information:
      • Exact location and nature of incident
      • Description of shooter (race, gender, clothing)
      • Description of weapons (rifle, pistol)
      • Number of injuries/fatalities
      • Your exact location, name and call back number
    • Leave campus or wait in a safe place to be evacuated by police.

    Hide Concept

    If you cannot exit the facility/area, implement lockdown procedures:

    • Move to nearest room that can be secured.
    • Lock doors and windows and close blinds and curtains.
    • Turn off devices that emit light or sound.
    • Seek protective cover behind large furniture.
    • Do not answer the door or verbal inquiries.
    • Call University Police to provide information.
    • Reassure others and assist the injured.
    • Wait for police to respond or for an “all clear” to be issued before leaving the room.

    Fight Concept

    If you encounter the shooter and you cannot escape, consider taking the following actions:

    • Do not make sudden movements or do anything to provoke the shooter.
    • Respond to the shooter when questioned.
    • A physical attack should be a last resort to preserve your life or the lives of others.
      • Work together or alone to disable the shooter.
      • Use aggression or improvised weapons.

    Police Response Concept

    The primary objective is to locate and neutralize the shooter. Police will work to identify:

    • The number and description of shooters
    • The number and types of weapons

    Police officers will:

    • Engage suspects, if threatened
    • Treat everyone as a suspect
    • Not treat any injured people or evacuate any other occupants

    You can help police with search and clear operation protocols by doing the following:

    • If you are near the suspect(s) when officers arrive, drop to floor, empty your hands and remain quiet.
    • Keep your hands visible and obey commands.
    • Expect to be put on the ground and searched.
    • Do not run toward officers or scream or yell.

    Post-Incident Actions

    • Emergency medical services will respond and treat the injured.
    • Evacuation will be coordinated.
    • Personnel will be escorted to secure areas.


  • Bomb Threat

    Bomb threats are usually received via telephone.

    • Stay calm and pay attention to details.
    • Write down information as the caller says it and take accurate notes, including:
      • The exact time of the call
      • The exact words the caller used
    • Ask the caller the following questions and attempt to get the information passively:
      • When is the bomb going to explode?
      • What does the bomb look like?
      • Where is the bomb located?
      • What kind of bomb is it?
      • What will cause the bomb to explode?
      • Did you place the bomb? Why?
      • Where are you calling from?
      • Where do you live?
      • What is your name?
    • Try to keep the caller on the phone as long as possible, and listen for and record the following:
      • Age and gender of caller
      • Speech pattern, accent or nationality
      • Emotional state of the caller
      • Background noises
      • Anything to help determine the origin of the call
    • Have another person call University Police to relay the caller information as it is recorded. Note: The person should be far enough away to not be overheard by the caller.
    • Follow University Police instructions.
  • Suspicious Package

    A suspicious package can be a box, container or letter.


    • Bulky, lopsided, rigid or uneven
    • Missing postage or return address
    • Incorrect titles or misspelled labels
    • Leaks, stains, powders or protruding items
    • Contains a ticking, vibration or other sound


    • Do not handle/disturb, and slowly move away.
    • Record the location, description and mailer’s and addressee’s names and addresses.
    • Clear immediate area/room of all persons.
    • Notify University Police at 325-942-2071.
    • If the package has emitted a powder or substance:
      • Instruct people in immediate area to wash exposed skin with soap and water.
      • Record names of these people and direct to a designated safe area to await instructions.
      • Turn off HVAC system and cordon off area.


  • Severe Weather


    An advisory or watch is issued when conditions are favorable for a specific weather event.

    Notify appropriate faculty/staff of developing weather and begin monitoring the event.


    A warning is issued when there is an indication of an imminent life-threatening weather event.

    Notify faculty, staff, students and visitors of the situation and implement an emergency action plan.

    Tornado/Severe Thunderstorm

    An ASUAlert severe weather warning will be issued for tornadoes and thunderstorms containing lightening, hail and excess winds. In the event of severe weather warnings, the campus population should:

    • Implement shelter-in-place and alert others.
    • Shut off equipment that is not surge protected.
    • Move to a designated shelter within the facility.
    • Avoid areas with windows and close doors to protect shelter areas from flying debris.
    • Report facility damage and/or injuries to University Police.

    Storm Shelters

    Storm shelter signs are posted in campus facilities, indicating established shelter areas. If you cannot get to a designated shelter, move to the lowest floor of the facility, away from windows, and close all the doors.

    Flash Flood

    Significant rain events occurring over a short period of time may result in the flooding of roadways/low-lying areas.

    • Do not drive through standing water as the vehicle may stall, trapping you.
    • Do not drive through streams as the vehicle may be swept away by floodwaters.
    • Do not attempt to cross a stream where water is above your knees because you may be swept away.

    Floodwaters should also be avoided because they may contain hazards, such as chemicals, large debris, sewage or downed power lines. 

    Lightning Strike

    • Immediately call 9-1-1 to request medical response.
    • Request someone bring the nearest automatic external defibrillator (AED) unit to the scene.
    • Administer first aid/emergency treatment to the extent at which you have been trained and/or are comfortable.
      • If the victim stops or has stopped breathing, administer CPR and begin with rescue breathing.
      • If the heart has stopped beating, turn on the AED unit and follow audio instructions.

    Note: People struck by lightning carry no electrical charge and cannot shock other people.

  • Utility Failure

    Maintenance should be immediately notified of incidents that affect the facility infrastructure.

    • Campus facility occupants: 325-942-2355
    • Residence hall occupants: 325-942-2733
    • After hours for major maintenance issues: 325-942-2071


    • Do not turn off electricity while standing in water.
    • Immediately stop using electrical devices.
    • If a sink or toilet is the source, attempt to shut off water supply valve.
    • Notify the appropriate department.
    • If you are notified to evacuate the building:
      • Exit using the nearest stairwell.
      • Avoid areas of standing or rushing water.
      • Do not use elevators.

    Gas/Chemical Leak

    • Cease all operations immediately and evacuate the area/facility, alerting others as you leave.
      • Extinguish open-flame sources.
      • Do not switch electrical devices on/off.
      • Do not close drawers, windows or doors.
    • Report the leak to University Police.
    • After evacuating, move upwind, at least 300 feet away from the affected area/facility.
    • Do not re-enter the area/facility until cleared to do so by University Police or the fire department.

    Power Failure

    • Notify the appropriate department.
    • If you are instructed to evacuate the facility:
      • Leave using the nearest stairwell/exit.
      • Do not use elevators.
    • Laboratory personnel should secure chemicals to prevent vapors from reaching hazardous concentration levels. 
  • Fire

    Fire Prevention

    • Report broken fire equipment to the emergency management coordinator at 325-942-2180.
    • Never prop stairwell or hallway fire doors open.
    • Never block emergency egress routes or exits.
    • Report smoke/fire and gas or chemical leaks.

    Small Fire Procedures

    A small fire is considered wastebasket size. Anything larger requires standard fire procedures.

    • Notify University Police at 325-942-2071.
    • Employ a fire extinguisher if you are trained and/or are comfortable.
      • Discharge the extinguisher 8–10 feet away from your target.
      • PASS – Pull the pin, Aim at base of fire, Squeeze the handle, Sweep side to side (most extinguishers last 30 seconds).
    • If you are uncomfortable using an extinguisher or unable to extinguish the flames:
      • Evacuate via the nearest exit and alert others.
      • Activate the fire alarm pull station as you exit, if the building is not in alarm.
      • Call 9-1-1 to report the facility and the fire location.
      • Inform emergency responders of the nature and location of the fire.

    Remember: If clothes catch fire, drop to the floor and roll back and forth. If assisting someone else, smother the fire with a blanket or rug and notify an emergency responder for assistance.

    Fire Procedures

    • Activate the nearest fire alarm pull station.
    • Call 9-1-1 to report facility and location of fire.
    • Evacuate facility via the nearest exit, notifying occupants as you leave.

    Fire Evacuation Procedures

    • Before opening a door, place your palm against it to see if it is hot.
    • If cool to the touch:
      • Open the door slowly and check for smoke.
      • Stay low and avoid smoke-filled areas.
      • Use the nearest accessible stairwell or exit.
      • Do not use elevators.
      • Close all doors as you exit.
    • If the door is hot, remain in room:
      • If you are on the ground floor, carefully exit via a window.
      • If you are on an upper floor, call 9-1-1 to report your location and status.
      • Place a towel under the door to block smoke.
      • Open a window, if possible.
      • Hang a towel from a window to mark your location.
      • Stay low to avoid smoke and heat.
    • Meet at an assembly point after exiting and remain at least 300 feet upwind from the facility.
    • Keep all parking lots, walkways and roadways clear for emergency responders and vehicles.
    • Prevent people from entering the facility.
    • Do not re-enter the facility until University Police or fire department personnel issue an “all-clear.”

Human Health and Safety

  • Medical Emergency

    Severe Injuries

    • Call 9-1-1 to report the incident and request medical assistance.
    • Notify University Police at 325-942-2071.
    • If there is no immediate danger to you or the victim, stay with the victim until help arrives.

    Slips, Trips and Falls

    • Notify University Police and Environmental Health and Safety at 325-942-2180.
    • Refer those requiring medical treatment:

    Victim Assistance

    • Request assistance from others to make notifications and/or help treat the injured.
    • Administer first aid/emergency treatment to the extent at which you have been trained and/or are comfortable.
    • If you suspect a back or neck injury, do not move the person unless the situation is life threatening (i.e., a building collapse). Symptoms of head, neck or back injury are:
      • Complaints of severe pain in neck or back
      • Complaints of weakness, numbness or paralysis, or lack of control of limbs
      • Ongoing changes to levels of consciousness
    • Report all accidents/incidents to Environmental Health and Safety.

    Electrical Shock

    • Immediately call 9-1-1 to request medical response.
    • Request that someone bring the nearest automatic external defibrillator (AED) unit to the scene.
    • Do not touch the person until he/she has been separated from the electrical source.
      • Turn off power via circuit breaker, fuse box or switch.
      • If unsafe/unable to turn off power, separate the person from current using a non-conductive item.
    • Do not attempt to turn off or separate the person from a high voltage source.
    • Administer first aid/emergency treatment to the extent at which you have been trained and/or are comfortable.
      • If the victim stops or has stopped breathing, administer CPR and begin with rescue breathing.
      • If the heart has stopped beating, turn on the AED unit and follow audio instructions

    Note: People struck by lightning carry no electrical charge and cannot shock other people.

  • Hazardous Material Spill

    Chemical hygiene and lab safety plans are developed to provide guidance for how to safely handle and respond to hazardous material spills.

    Spill Response Procedures

    • Alert individuals in close proximity to the spill.
    • Evacuate the area/facility if the substance poses an inhalation or other exposure hazard.
    • Notify Environmental Health and Safety at 325-942-2180, and University Police at 325-942-2071.
    • Provide the following information:
      • Type of spill (chemical/biological)
      • Specific location of the spill
      • The substance and quantity involved
      • Hazards associated with the substance
      • Any injuries/medical treatment requirements

    Remediation Procedures

    • Attempt to contain the spill to the extent at which you have been trained and/or are comfortable.
      • Use appropriate personal protective equipment: gloves, eye protection, mask, etc.
      • Use appropriate absorbent/containment materials and procedures.
    • If you do not feel comfortable containing the spill, keep the area secure and wait for appropriate personnel to arrive.

    For questions or concerns regarding chemical handling and storage, chemical spill response and/or laboratory safety standards, contact Environmental Health and Safety at 325-942-2180.

  • Abnormal Behavior

    Abnormal behavior may be displayed by someone who is threatening physical harm to themselves or others, appears to be out of touch with reality or is acting irrational. The person could be having a psychological crisis or be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Approach the situation by focusing on theperson’s behavior and its consequences, and follow the guidelines below.

    Illogical or Irrational Behavior

    • Have someone notify a supervisor about the situation.
    • Stay calm and stay with the person.
    • Have someone notify University Police and provide the following information:
      • Description of the situation and location
      • Description of the disruptive individual and observed symptoms/behaviors
      • Names of individuals involved
    • Be supportive/compassionate until help arrives.
    • Maintain a safe distance and do not confront or try to detain the individual.
    • Do not argue with or aggravate the individual.
    • Have someone meet University Police when they arrive to provide updated information.

    Attempting to Harm Themselves or Others

    • Have someone notify a supervisor about the situation.
    • Stay calm and try to assist the injured.
    • Call 9-1-1 if victims require medical treatment.
    • Have someone notify University Police and provide the following information:
      • Description of the situation and location
      • Description of the disruptive individual and observed symptoms/behaviors
      • Names of individuals involved
      • Names of injured and description of injuries
    • Provide first aid and/or CPR if you have been trained and/or feel comfortable.
    • Have someone meet University Police and other emergency personnel upon arrival to the scene.