Emergency Evacuation Plan and Procedures
What is an Emergency?
An emergency is an unforeseen event or condition requiring prompt action. Emergencies at Middlesex Community College can be generally classified as medical emergencies, fire/fire alarm emergencies, and public safety emergencies & environmental emergencies. Emergency conditions either affect an individual, a small group or the entire college. In the case they affect the entire College they typically involve the evacuation of the campuses.
There are many reasons a campus may have to be evacuated. The most common reason for evacuation is due to fire alarm activation. Other reasons for evacuating a campus include, but are not limited to a bomb threat, environmental condition or a physical threat. When you are asked to evacuate the facility by Public Safety personnel, law enforcement or the fire alarm sounds:
- Collect all personal belongings including book bags, jackets, brief cases, etc. Why? Because you can't count on returning to the building and in the case of a bomb threat such items would be considered suspicious and handled as a possible "device".
- Immediately leave the building following any verbal instructions and follow the evacuation route posted adjacent to the primary classroom exit door.
- Faculty should assign someone to provide assistance in assuring students with disabilities are directed to the evacuation point.
- Faculty should turn off all gas and electrical appliances. The lights should be left on, the corridor door closed and left unlocked.
- Upon exiting the building move well away from the building. This will prevent a "log jam" of people at the entranceway and allow the fire department swift access.
- Re-entry: The College public safety personnel shall notify you when it is safe to return to the building.
We recommend that faculty review the evacuation procedure with their class at the beginning of each semester. Students should also take time to review the evacuation route posted next to the primary classroom exit door.
We recommend that students with disabilities identify themselves to a faculty member if they feel they may require assistance during an evacuation. Together they can formulate an evacuation plan. Under no circumstances are the elevators to be used when a fire alarm is sounding.
Emergency Drills, Testing and Evacuation Procedures
The purpose of evacuation drills is to prepare building occupants for an organized evacuation in case of an emergency. At Middlesex Community College, evacuation drills are used as a way to educate and train students, faculty and staff. During the drill, students, faculty and staff ‘practice’ drill procedures and familiarize themselves with the location of exits and the sound of the fire alarm. In addition to education, the process also provides MCC with the opportunity to test the operation of fire alarm system components.
Evacuation drills are coordinated by the Department of Public Safety & the Environmental Health & Safety Officer. In all buildings, emergency exits signs are provided to give guidance on the direction people should travel when exiting each building for a short-term building evacuation. In academic buildings, evacuation maps are posted on the wall next to the classroom doors and in administrative buildings the evacuation maps are located along the corridors. MCC does not tell individuals 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. Staff on the scene will communicate information to individuals regarding the developing situation or any evacuation status changes. Fire drills are typically scheduled during the early start of the fall & spring semesters.
MCC conducts announced and unannounced drills and exercises each year and conducts follow-through activities designed for assessment and evaluation of emergency plans and capabilities.