Office of Emergency Management

Are You Ready Spartans?

Preparedness

Emergencies can happen anywhere. It is important to be prepared at work, school and home. While at work or in class, the University has many notification systems to alert you to a dangerous situation, and emergency plans to respond to urgent situations on campus. But how will you respond?

To learn more about how you can be prepared for emergency situations, click through the sections below:



In any active shooter situation there are three key things that you can do help yourself and others.

RUN
If there is an accessible escape path, attempt to evacuate the premises. Be sure to:

  • Have an escape route and plan in mind
  • Evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow
  • Leave your belongings behind
  • Help others escape, if possible
  • Prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be
  • Keep your hands visible
  • Follow the instructions of any police officers
  • Do not attempt to move wounded people
  • Call 334-4444 or 911 when you are safe

HIDE
If evacuation is not possible, find a place to hide where the active shooter is less likely to find you. Your hiding place should:

  • Be out of the active shooter’s view
  • Provide protection if shots are fired in your direction (i.e., an office with a closed and locked door)
  • Lock the door
  • Blockade the door with heavy furniture
  • Silence your cell phone and/or pager
  • Turn off any source of noise (i.e., radios, television)
  • Remain calm
  • Dial 334-4444 or 911, if possible, to alert police to the active shooter’s location
  • If you cannot speak, leave the line open and allow the dispatcher to listen

FIGHT
As a last resort, and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to disrupt and/or incapacitate the active shooter by:

  • Work as a team
  • Acting as aggressively as possible against him/her
  • Throwing items and improvising weapons
  • Yelling
  • Committing to your actions

How to react when law enforcement arrives:

  • Remain calm, and follow officers’ instructions
  • Put down any items in your hands (i.e., bags, jackets)
  • Immediately raise hands and spread fingers
  • Keep hands visible at all times
  • Avoid making quick movements toward officers such as holding on to them for safety
  • Avoid pointing, screaming and/or yelling
  • Do not stop to ask officers for help or direction when evacuating, just proceed in the direction from which officers are entering the premises

Active Shooter Training Videos

While rare, it is important to prepare for an armed intruder situation just as you prepare for other types of emergencies. An armed intruder is defined by a person actively threatening lives in a populated area, and generally involves the use of firearms. These situations evolve very rapidly, and require individuals to make decisions very quickly. Each situation is unique, and how to best respond to an armed intruder situation will be determined by the specific circumstances at the time of the event. If you find yourself faced with an armed intruder situation, try to remain calm and use the general guidelines outlined below to help make the best plan possible.

If an armed intruder is in the Same Building as You or Outside of Your Building:
Go to a room that can be locked, and lock the door behind you. If you cannot locate a room that will lock, find a room that you can barricade the door. Barricade the door with tables, book cases, and other heavy items.

  • Ensure all windows and doors are closed and locked.
  • Turn off the lights.
  • If possible, get everyone on the floor so no one is visible from outside the room.
  • Silence cell phones and similar devices.
  • Contact University Police (334-4444) and inform them of what is happening and where you are.
  • Remain in place until you are instructed by the police that it is safe to leave the room. Note: Do not respond to any unfamiliar voices until you can verify their identity, as it may be the shooter attempting to lure victims from safety.
  • Remember: Always follow the instructions of law enforcement. Keep your hands visible, and do not make any unexpected movements.

If an armed intruder enters your Office/Area/Classroom:

  • Try to remain calm.
  • Contact University Police (334-4444) if possible.
  • If there is absolutely no opportunity to escape or hide, attempting to “fight back” or “overpower” the shooter may be your only option. This should be considered as a last resort.
  • If the shooter leaves the area, immediately proceed to a safer location and contact University Police: 334-4444. Provide as much information as possible.

If you decide to Flee:

  • Do not attempt to carry anything.
  • Move quickly, keep your hands visible, and follow the instructions of any police officers you may encounter.
  • Do not attempt to move injured people. Contact University Police (334-4444) immediately, and notify them of the situation and the location of the injured individuals.

For more information on you should prepare and respond to an armed intruder situation on campus, contact University Police at 334-5963.

A bomb threat may be presented in a number of ways including a note or phone call. The most important things to remember are to remain calm, and immediately contact University Police (334-4444).

What to do in Case of a Bomb Threat:

  1. If received by phone, listen to the caller carefully. Be polite and show interest.
  2. Try to keep the caller talking so you can gather information. If possible, have someone else contact University Police while you are talking with the caller.
  3. If you receive a note, contact University Police immediately. Follow the instructions of the police officers.
  4. DO NOT evacuate the building unless instructed by University Police, or unless there is an immediate threat to your health and safety.
  5. DO NOT pull the fire alarm.
  6. Record time, date and phone number if possible of call or receipt of the written message.
  7. Be prepared to answers questions:
    • Who or what are you attempting to harm?
    • What is to happen?
    • When is it to happen?
    • Where is it to happen?
    • How is it to happen?
    • Why are you making the threat?
  8. When the caller hangs up on you call University Police immediately: 334-4444. Provide them with as much of the above information as possible. If necessary, quietly have a co-worker or someone nearby contact University Police while you are on the phone with the caller.
  9. DO NOT touch any suspicious or unfamiliar objects.
  10. DO NOT conduct any type of search.

While earthquakes are rare in this part of North Carolina, there remains a potential for an earthquake to occur. Just like with other disasters, it is important to be prepared and understand what you should do to stay safe during an earthquake.

Safety During an Earthquake

If you feel the ground shake, take the following precautions immediately:

  1. DUCK – When the shaking first starts: DUCK or drop to the floor.
  2. COVER – Take COVER under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture. If there is nothing available to take cover under, crouch against an interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms. Stay away from windows, hanging objects, mirrors or anything that might fall over.
  3. HOLD – If seeking cover under a piece of furniture, HOLD on to it and be prepared to move with it during the quake.

Use these tips if you find yourself in any of the following places when an earthquake strikes:

  • High-rise building – Stay near an interior wall. Do not use the elevators.
  • Outdoors – Remain outdoors. Move to a clear area, away from trees, signs, buildings, or downed electrical wires and poles.
  • Walking along the street – Duck into a doorway to protect yourself from falling bricks, glass, plaster and other debris.
  • In your car – Pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses, power lines, and other hazards. STAY INSIDE THE VEHICLE UNTIL THE SHAKING IS OVER.
  • In a mall or other public place – Do not rush for the exits. DO NOT PANIC. Move away from anything that might fall.
  • In the kitchen—Move away from the refrigerator, stove, and overhead cupboards.
  • In a stadium or theater – Stay in your seat and protect your head with your arms. DO NOT try and leave until the shaking is over.

Remember: If you are outside, remain outside. If you are inside, remain inside until the shaking stops and it is safe to exit. DO NOT try to re-enter a building until it has been determined safe to do so by the appropriate authorities.


References

During some emergencies, it may be necessary to evacuate. The exact procedures, including where you will evacuate, will be determined by the emergency. Evacuations are generally required when remaining in your current location is potentially more dangerous than leaving. As you evacuate, remember that your safety is always most important.

General Action Steps:

  1. Remain calm.
  2. When an announcement is made to evacuate, immediately leave the area. Announcements may be in the form of a fire alarm, emergency alert, verbal message from emergency responders, etc…
  3. Alert others as you leave the area.
  4. If you are inside of a building, use emergency exit stairs to leave the building. DO NOT use elevators.
  5. If you are inside of a building, shut doors as you exit.
  6. If you are outside, follow the directions of the evacuation message or emergency personnel to determine where to evacuate to or the area to avoid.
  7. If you are directed to an evacuation assembly area, DO NOT leave the area until instructed to do so by emergency personnel.
  8. Follow instructions of emergency personnel.
  9. If you are unable to evacuate a building: go to the nearest emergency stairwell, notify University Police (334-4444) or 9-1-1 of your location, and wait for further assistance from emergency personnel.
  10. DO NOT re-enter the area until instructed to do so by emergency personnel.

Remember: During some evacuations, you may not be allowed back into the building or campus for an extended period of time. While you should not comprise your safety to gather materials before evacuating, take any items you may need such as medication when you leave the area.

In any event, always remember to follow the instructions of authorities as information becomes available. Remember to take all warnings and alerts seriously.

While fires are rare on campus, they do occur both on and off campus each year. Prevention is the key to fire safety. Remember, it only takes a few minutes for a small flame to become an out of control fire that consumes an entire room, apartment, or other space.

If a fire occurs ON campus:

  1. If a burning odor, smoke and/or flames are present, EVACUATE the building IMMEDIATELY.
  2. Feel doors with the back of your hand for heat before opening them. If the door is hot, do not open it. Find a different way out, such as a window or alternate hallway.
  3. As you leave the building, pull a manual fire alarm box to activate the fire alarm system.
  4. If it is safe to do so, close doors as you leave the building to help contain the smoke and fire, as well as secure your office space or room.
  5. Remember: DO NOT use elevators.
  6. Remember: If there is smoke, crawl on your hands and knees as you leave the building. If possible, keep your mouth covered as you leave the building.
  7. Report to the building’s assembly point, or follow the directions of emergency personnel. Be prepared to assist others as you evacuate.
  8. Once you are a safe location, contact University Police (334.4444), and advise them of the situation (location, what you saw, if someone is trapped, etc…).
  9. DO NOT re-enter the building for any reason. Stay away from the building, parking lot and roadway around the building for your safety. Emergency personnel or University Police will provide further instructions and inform you when it is safe to re-enter the building.

If a fire occurs OFF campus:

  1. If a burning odor, smoke and/or flames are present, EVACUATE the building IMMEDIATELY.
  2. Feel doors with the back of your hand for heat before opening them. If the door is hot, do not open it. Find a different way out, such as a window or alternate hallway.
  3. As you leave the building, pull a manual fire alarm box to activate the fire alarm system if you are in a building or apartment complex that has one.
  4. If it is safe to do so, close doors as you leave the building to help contain the smoke and fire, as well as secure your office space or room.
  5. Remember: If there is smoke, crawl on your hands and knees as you leave the building. If possible, keep your mouth covered as you leave the building.
  6. Once you are a safe location outside of the building, call 9-1-1 and advise them of the situation (location, what you saw, if someone is trapped, etc…).
  7. DO NOT re-enter the building for any reason. Stay away from the building, parking lot and roadway around the building for your safety. Emergency personnel will provide further instructions and inform you when it is safe to re-enter the building.

Fire Alarms:

  1. If the audible fire alarm sounds, evacuate the building immediately.
  2. As you leave the building, pull a manual fire alarm box to activate the fire alarm system.
  3. If it is safe to do so, close doors as you leave the building to help contain the smoke and fire.
  4. Report to an assembly point immediately after exiting the building.
  5. Once you are a safe location, contact emergency personnel (on-campus: University Police 334-4444 and off-campus 911) and advise them of the situation (location, what you saw, if someone is trapped, etc…).
  6. DO NOT re-enter the building until instructed to do so by emergency personnel.

Remember: There is never a false alarm. The fire alarm is going off for a reason. While it may not be a fire, you do not know that until the building is searched. ALWAYS treat fire alarms as if there is a real fire. DO NOT wait until it is too late to leave; your life could depend on it.

Prevention:

Simple steps can help keep you and those around you safe by preventing a fire. While you are on campus, remember that items with an open flame (such as candles) or an open heat source (such as hot plates) are prohibited. Household extension cords should never be used, and only commercial extension cords are approved for temporary use. Appliances (such as toasters and coffee makers) that are designed for household use only are also prohibited. Make sure you keep your workspace or living area clean, allow at 36 inches of space around any heat source (such as a space heater). Ensure that emergency exits are not blocked by boxes, bags, or other items. Finally, you should never leave any food being cooked unattended. This includes food being prepared in microwave ovens.

While off campus, many of the same rules used on campus apply in the same ways. While items such as candles may not be prohibited, they can still be dangerous if not used properly. Never leave open flames or heat sources unattended. Items such as household extension cords can pose a fire a hazard, and should be avoided. Remember to regularly check your smoke detectors, and replace the batteries.

Are you insured? – Make sure you have insurance to cover property damage. For example, if you rent an apartment or a house, you should have renters insurance. Visit http://www.ncdoi.com/ for more information.

Flooding can occur at any time during the year in North Carolina. Flash flooding can occur quickly following an afternoon thunderstorm or during heavy rains. It only takes a few inches of water to sweep a car or person away.

Remember: Flash Flood Warning or Flood Warning means that flooding is likely in a given area. Flash flooding can occur rapidly with little warning. Flooding may occur over an extended period of time. Regardless, any type of flooding can be dangerous and has the potential to lead to the loss of life. Always monitor local media outlets and NOAA weather radio for up-to-date weather information.

Make a Plan
Flooding can come with a variety of hazards. Know what to do when a flood occurs. Remember, never drive through standing water. Avoid flood streets. If your home or office is prone to flooding, know where you will go when waters rise. You should never walk into flood waters, as moving water could easily knock you off balance. It only takes a few inches of water to knock you off balance or carry your car away.

Build a Kit
Have an emergency kit for home and work that contains the essential items you may need following a disaster. Visit ReadyGuilford.org for more information on how to build a kit for you and your family. Remember, you may be on your own for several hours or several days. This includes periods of extended power outages.

Get Informed
Make sure you know how and when you will be alerted to emergencies both on campus and off campus. Get a NOAA Weather Alert Radio. This will alert you to severe weather watches and warnings impacting your area. Register for University emergency notification systems, such as text messaging. Also keep a battery powered radio with you at home and work. This will allow you to access up-to-date weather information if the power is lost.

Are you insured? – Make sure you have insurance to cover property damage. For example, if you rent an apartment or a house, you should have renters insurance. If you live in a flood prone area, you may need additional insurance (flood insurance). Visit NC Department of Insurance for more information.

While rare, you may come across a hazardous material. Hazardous materials can be many things, including a chemical that has spilled, a leaking cylinder, or a gas leak from a car or building (for the purposes of this section). The response to these types of situations may vary depending on the material. The most important thing to remember is avoid the area and contact emergency personnel.

General Action Steps:

  1. Unless trained to do so, do not attempt to clean up the spill or stop the leak yourself.
  2. Evacuate the immediate area as necessary.
    • If there is a fire, pull the fire alarm and evacuate the building.
    • DO NOT pull the fire alarm to evacuate a building during a gas leak. University Police and the fire department will evacuate facilities as necessary. Activating the fire alarm may create additional hazards.
  3. Notify University Police at 334-4444 and provide as much information as possible:
    • Where has the accident occurred?
    • What do see/smell?
    • Is the leak inside or outside?
    • Is anyone injured?
    • Is the leak fast or slow?
    • What type of material is it?
    • Fire or smoke?
  4. Follow the instructions of emergency personnel.
  5. Wait in a safe location away from the immediate for emergency personnel. DO NOT re-enter the area until instructed to so by emergency personnel.

Medical emergencies often present life-threatening situations that require immediate action. The most important step in any medical emergency is to notify emergency response personnel as quickly as possible.

Medical emergencies may be caused by any number of factors and could present many different signs and symptoms. Emergency scenarios may include difficulty breathing, choking, chest pain, heart attacks, unconsciousness, allergic reactions, low or high blood sugar levels, uncontrollable or perfuse bleeding, heat exhaustion or stroke, seizures, fall from a significant height, significant trauma, and many other scenarios. If you witness or suspect someone is having a medical emergency or feel that you are experiencing a medical emergency, notify emergency personnel immediately.

  1. On-Campus – Dial (336) 334-4444 for emergency assistance. Police, Fire and EMS will be sent as appropriate to provide emergency medical care.
    • Off-Campus – Dial 9-1-1 2.
  2. Provide as much information as possible.
    • Name of individual
    • Location (be as specific as possible)
    • Description of medical emergency
    • Any known/pertinent medical history or information (ie: heart condition, epilepsy, etc…)
  3. Follow instructions of the emergency dispatcher.
  4. Do NOT attempt to move the injured person.
  5. Provide care only to your level of training and comfort only if it is safe to do so.
  6. Stay with the victim until emergency personnel arrive if it is safe to do so.

Emergencies can happen anywhere. It is important to be prepared at work, school and home. While at work or in class, the University has many notification systems to alert you to a dangerous situation, and emergency plans to respond to urgent situations on campus. But how will you respond? How will you respond at home?

Consider these scenarios:

  • It is 1:30 AM, and you are in bed asleep. A tornado is moving toward your apartment just a few miles from campus. A tornado warning was issued. How will you be alerted?

    Did you know that North Carolina is the leading state for nighttime tornado fatalities? Don’t become a statistic. Make a plan. It could save your life.
  • You are at home cooking dinner when you hear your cell phone ringing in the bedroom. You decide to run and grab it. You get to the room, and sit down for a minute while you talk. A few minutes later, you hear the smoke alarm. You walk back toward the kitchen and see thick, black smoke, flames climbing up the wall, and hear loud popping sounds. The food you were cooking has caught fire, and the fire is now out of control. What would you do? How will you recover if you lose everything?

Each year, individuals are impacted by disasters and not prepared. While no one can plan for everything or predict what will happen, taking time now to think about some basic items can go a long way when something does happen. Help keep you, your friends, and your family safe.

Make a Plan
Think about your home. What do you need to do when an emergency occurs? Below are a few things to consider:

  • Evacuation
    Think about how you will evacuate, and where you will go. Make sure you know at least two ways out of your residence hall, home or apartment. Think about other places you can stay in the event you cannot return to your home or apartment.
  • Know Who to Call
    In the event of an emergency, your family and friends will be concerned about your wellbeing. It will be important to notify them that you are okay. Identify a family member or friend, preferably outside of the area you live, that you will notify after an emergency. This person can then serve as the contact for other family and friends. Remember, phone lines may be down. Be creative. Send an email, a text message, or call a person outside of the impacted area. Make sure others know who your contact person is so they will know if you are okay.
  • Pets
    Make sure you think about your pets. What will they need, and where can they go? Thinking about these things ahead of time will help save valuable time during an emergency.
  • Shelter-in-Place
    Quick, a tornado is coming! Do you know here to go? If you were told to shelter-in-place, would you know what to do? Think about the safest areas in your residence to take shelter. This may simply mean locking doors and windows, or it could mean taking shelter from a tornado.
  • Employees
    In some cases, you may be asked to return to work following a disaster or significant emergency. Having a plan before an emergency or disaster occurs will help keep your family and home safe. This may include identifying an alternate location for your family to stay while you are away, or an agreement with neighbors or other family members to check on your home or family.

Build a Kit
Have an emergency kit for home and work that contains the essential items you may need following a disaster. Visit ReadyGuilford.org for more information on how to build a kit for you and your family. Remember, you may be on your own for several hours or several days. This includes periods of extended power outages.

Get Informed
Make sure you know how and when you will be alerted to emergencies both on campus and off campus. Get a NOAA Weather Alert Radio. This will alert you to severe weather watches and warnings impacting your area. Register for University emergency notification systems, such as text messaging. Also keep a battery powered radio with you at home and work. This will allow you to access up-to-date weather information if the power is lost.

Are you insured? – Make sure you have insurance to cover property damage. For example, if you rent an apartment or a house, you should have renters insurance. If you live in a flood prone area, you may need additional insurance (flood insurance). Visit NC Department of Insurance for more information.

If a Power Outage Occurs
Notify UNCG Facilities Operations during regular business hours, between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM. If it is after hours, notify the UNCG Police Department. REMAIN CALM. Wait a few minutes for emergency power to come on to provide emergency lighting. If evacuation of the building is required, assist any disabled persons and use the stairway to exit. DO NOT use elevators. Unplug all nonessential electrical equipment, televisions, and computers. Turn off light switches as a surge may blow out left-on lights and other equipment when power is restored. Contact Facilities Operations for information regarding scope and expected duration of outage.

A Power Outage In A Laboratory Or Research Facility
Laboratory personnel should secure experiments or activities that may present a danger when electrical power is off. Also consider what could happen if power is unexpectedly restored. Notify the lab supervisor immediately. Take actions to preserve human and animal safety as well as research. Keep essential research refrigerators and freezers closed throughout the outage to keep them cold. If conditions are hazardous, notify Environmental Health and Safety during regular business hours. If it is after hours, notify the UNCG Police Department. If a laboratory fume hood is non-operational, cap all open containers and close the sash.

If You Are Trapped In An Elevator
If you are trapped in an elevator, push the “Call for Help” button. Speak with the dispatcher and identify the building, elevator number, and floor.

If Others Are Trapped In An Elevator
If someone is trapped in an elevator because of a power outage, call the UNCG Police Department. Give specific directions to the inoperative elevator and have someone meet emergency personnel outside of the building. Tell passengers to remain calm, help is coming. Talk to passengers until emergency personnel arrive.

Additional Resources

In many cases, a robbery or theft situation may be able to be prevented. Taking simple actions can help prevent this situation from occurring to you and someone else.

Consider doing the following:

  • When you leave your room, lock your door. Even if you are just going down the hall for a minute, lock your door.
  • When working in a public area, do not leave your phone, laptop, bag, or other valuables unattended. Take them with you or have a friend watch them if you must leave.
  • If you see someone or something suspicious, call University Police IMMEDIATELY. Do not wait to call. Call as soon as you see something. This may include someone hanging around a car and looking inside of the windows, someone looking inside of empty offices, etc…
  • Lock your car doors, and do not leave valuables visible.
  • Do not walk alone late at night. Walk in groups. If you are concerned, contact University Police.

If you are confronted with a robbery or theft situation:

  1. Do what you are told by the person(s) without argument during a robbery.
  2. Encourage others around you to do the same.
  3. As soon as it is safe, immediately contact University Police: 334-4444 or use an emergency blue light phone/classroom intercom. Provide as many details as possible:
    • A description of the individual(s).
    • Were weapons displayed/involved? Is so, what kind?
    • Were threats made?
    • Where is the person(s) currently? Which direction did they go when they left?
    • Was anyone hurt?
    • Any other information you feel is important.
  4. Do not attempt to argue or negotiate with the person(s).
  5. Have some maintain visual contact with the person(s), only if it is possible to do so from a safe distance/location. Do not attempt to follow the person(s), especially if weapons were displayed.
  6. Follow the instructions of University Police.
  7. If you notice something has been stolen when you return your room, office or other location, immediately contact University Police.

For more information on how you should prepare and respond to a robbery on campus, contact University Police at 334-5963.

Did you know that North Carolina is one of the leading states for lightning related injuries in the United States? Severe weather is possible throughout the year in North Carolina, and it is important to be prepared when it occurs. While the potential exist throughout the year, severe weather is most common during the spring.

Knowing what to do when severe weather occurs could mean the difference between life and death. When a severe thunderstorm warning is issued, you may have only a few minutes to make the right decisions. Understanding the basics of severe weather safety and preparing now could help reduce the chances of injury or death for you and your family.

Know the Difference – Severe Thunderstorm Watches vs Severe Thunderstorm Warnings:

  • Severe Thunderstorm Watch – Means the potential exist for a severe thunderstorm to develop.
    When a watch is issued, you should take the time to make sure you are prepared for severe weather. Be aware of rapidly changing conditions, and be ready to take immediate action. Monitor local media outlets for up-to-date weather information. Review what actions you will need to take should there be severe weather.
  • Severe Thunderstorm Warning – Means a “severe” thunderstorm has been detected.
    When a warning is issued, you should take shelter immediately. Severe thunderstorms are classified as storms producing winds ≥ 58 MPH and/or hail 1” or greater is diameter (quarter size).

What to do during Severe Weather:

At Home:

  • Locate an interior room, away from windows.
  • Avoid open areas such as porches. Lighting can still reach you!
  • Do not use corded phones.
  • Avoid plumbing. Do not do things such as washing hands, taking a shower, etc…
  • Stay off items that are directly connected to electricity (stoves, computers, etc…).
  • Remain inside until the storm has passed (see below for more information).
  • If you cannot find a permanent structure, you can take shelter inside of a fully enclosed vehicle (excluding convertibles). Be cautious not to use radio equipment/electronic devices.
  • If you cannot locate a safe area or are too far from a vehicle/structure, remember to avoid tall objects, isolated trees, water, wet items, metal objects, open fields, and the tops of hills/ridges.

At Work/School:

  • During high winds or tornadoes, avoid large open spaces such as gyms and auditoriums.
  • Stay off of electrical equipment that may be directly connected to electricity (computers, corded phones, etc…)
  • Avoid plumbing. Do not do things such as washing hands, taking a shower, etc…
  • If necessary, look for Severe Weather Shelter Areas (located in select facilities) marked by this sign.
  • Remain inside until the storm has passed.
  • If you cannot find a permanent structure, you can take shelter inside of a fully enclosed vehicle (excluding convertibles). Be cautious not to use radio equipment/electronic devices.

How you can Prepare for Severe Weather:

Make a Plan
Severe storms can bring a variety of hazards including deadly lightning, hail, heavy rain and damaging winds. Whether you are at home or work/school, you should have a plan in place outlining what you will do during severe weather, or any emergency.

Identify shelter areas in your home and office. Remember to look for the green Severe Weather Shelter Area signs on campus. During severe weather, especially during lightning storms, it is important to take shelter in safe, permanent structure with plumbing and electricity. This will help protect you from lightning strikes.

A safe building (structure) is one that is fully enclosed with a roof, walls and floor, and has plumbing or wiring. Examples may include a home, school, church, hotel, office building, or shopping center. If no safe building is near, a safe vehicle may serve as a substitute. A safe vehicle is any fully enclosed metal-topped vehicle.

Unsafe buildings include car ports, open garages, covered patios, picnic shelters, beach pavilions, golf shelters, tents of any kind, baseball dugouts, sheds, and greenhouses. Unsafe vehicles include convertibles, golf carts, riding mowers, open cab construction equipment, boats without cabins, and other similar vehicles.

Remember the 30/30 Rule
Take shelter if you cannot count to 30 between the flash of lightning and the clap of thunder, and remain indoors for at least 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder is heard.

Lightning: Remember, there is NO safe place outside during lightning. Porches, parking decks, trees and related structures do not offer any protection. A common myth is that the rubber soles of your shoes or rubber tires protect you from lightning. This is false, as it is the metal frame a fully enclosed (hard topped) vehicle or the shell of a permanent, enclosed structure that provides protection. Visit the National Weather Service Lightning Safety Tips and Resources website for more on lightning safety.

Build a Kit
Have an emergency kit for home and work that contains the essential items you may need following a disaster. Visit ReadyGuilford.org for more information on how to build a kit for you and your family. Remember, you may be on your own for several hours or several days. This includes periods of extended power outages.

Get Informed
Make sure you know how and when you will be alerted to emergencies both on campus and off campus. Get a NOAA Weather Alert Radio. This will alert you to severe weather watches and warnings impacting your area. Register for University emergency notification systems, such as text messaging. Also keep a battery powered radio with you at home and work. This will allow you to access up-to-date weather information if the power is lost.

Be sure to watch the weather forecast and plan accordingly. If thunderstorms are likely to occur, consider postponing outdoor activities.

Are you insured? – Make sure you have insurance to cover property damage. For example, if you rent an apartment or a house, you should have renters insurance. Visit http://www.ncdoi.com/ for more information.

In some situations, it may be safer to remain inside at your current location (shelter-in-place) rather than to evacuate. In these situations, leaving may put you in greater danger. Examples of these situations may include hazardous materials in the air, severe weather, active shooter situations, etc… Whatever the situation, it is important to act quickly and understand what shelter-in-place means. Remember: Shelter in place means to “Stay Put” and not leave.

Generally, individuals are only asked to shelter-in-place for a short span of time (a few minutes to a few hours). Authorities will attempt to provide information on whether or not you should shelter-in-place or evacuate, as well as the most appropriate actions to follow. However, there are some situations (such an active shooter) when authorities may not be able to immediately provide certain information, and it will be up to you to make the best decision on what to do with the information you have available.

It is important to maintain a plan of action should you be faced with a situation that requires you to stay put.

  • Specific actions will depend on the event, but may include locating a room with few or no windows, shutting windows, locking exterior doors, sealing off a room, shutting off devices that make noise, turning off ventilation systems, or moving into an interior portion of the building.
  • You should always be alert to changing conditions, and be prepared to take additional actions to ensure your safety.
  • Take time now to identify safe areas for you to stay put. Think of things that you may need while shelter-in-place. Make sure you have a plan outlining who you will contact, where you will go, and what you will need.
  • Contact Campus Police (334-4444) and advise them of the situation and your location (if appropriate and safe to do so).

Taking steps such as building an emergency kit and establishing an emergency contact list are additional steps that can be taken now, before an emergency. In the event of any emergency, having a list of contacts outside of the area is important. This will provide someone for you to contact and let them know you are okay. This will also give your family and friends a person to contact to check on your wellbeing.

In any event, always remember to follow the instructions of authorities as information becomes available. Remember to take all warnings and alerts seriously.

Suspicious activity can range from a suspicious person to a suspicious package. The most important thing to remember is that if you see something that does not look or feel right, call University Police IMMEDIATELY. Remember; You Be the One to Say Something! You could prevent the next crime.

Suspicious Person
A suspicious person may present themselves in different ways. You may notice someone who looking inside of empty offices or cars, or trying to open doors to offices or vehicles. Other times you may notice someone trying to cut a lock off of a bicycle. Remember, if something does not look or feel right, contact University Police IMMEDIATELY (334-4444). If you are off campus, dial 911.

  • Do not confront the person.
  • Contact University Police immediately: 334-4444. Off-campus dial 911.
  • Provide as much information as possible:
    • A description of the individual.
    • Where they are located; and what direction they may be going.
    • What they are doing.
    • Do they have any weapons?
  • Follow the instructions of University Police.
  • Maintain awareness of your surroundings. Remember your safety is most important. Always call as soon as you witness a suspicious person or activity. If you wait, it may be too late to prevent something from happening.

Suspicious Substance
Suspicious substances are rare, but you may encounter a situation where you are presented with an unknown substance. Situations may include receiving an envelope from an unknown sender that feels like it has powder inside or maybe a strange substance in an unusual location.

  • If you receive a letter or package and believe there is a suspicious/unknown substance (such as white powder) inside, do not open the package. Do not discard of the package. Do not carry/move the package around.
  • Contact University Police immediately: 334-4444. Off-campus dial 911.
  • Provide as much information as possible:
    • A description of the package.
    • Is anything coming out of the package?
    • Is anyone sick (coughing, difficulty breathing, etc…)?
  • If the package was opened, and an unknown/suspicious substance was seen, do not move or carry the package. Do not discard of the package. Set the package down, and contact University Police immediately: 334-4444. Provide as much information as possible.
  • Do not panic. Follow the instructions of emergency personnel.
  • Do not evacuate the building unless instructed by University Police, or unless there is an immediate threat to your health and safety.

For more information on suspicious activity including what to do or what to look for, contact University Police at 334-5963.

Tornadoes are possible throughout the year in North Carolina. For this reason, it is important to always be prepared for severe weather and the possibility of a tornado. While tornadoes are potential during the entire year in North Carolina, they are mostly likely during the spring season (March through May).

Knowing what to do when a tornado occurs could mean the difference between life and death. When a tornado is spotted or a warning is issued, you may have only a few critical moments to make some crucial decisions. Understanding the basics of tornado safety and preparing now could help reduce the chances of injury or death for you and your family.

Know the Difference – Tornado Watches vs Tornado Warnings:

  • Tornado Watch – Means the potential exist for a tornado to develop.
    When a tornado watch is issued, you should take the time to make sure you are prepared. Be aware of rapidly changing conditions, and be ready to take immediate action. Monitor local media outlets for up-to-date weather information. Review where you will go should there be a tornado.
  • Tornado Warning – Means a tornado has been spotted or indicated on radar.
    During a tornado warning, you should take evasive action. Remain in shelter until the danger has passed and the warning has expired. Monitor local media outlets for up-to-date weather information.

What to do during a Tornado:
Once you receive a message about a possible tornado, it is important to react quickly. DO NOT wait until you see the tornado to react, as it may be too late.

At Home:

  • Go to an interior room, away from windows.
  • Go to the lowest level possible.
  • Do not open or close windows.
  • Crouch on the floor, and cover your head as much as possible.
  • Use sturdy furniture, such as flipping over a couch, for protection.
  • Use blankets, jackets, and other similar items to help cover and protect your head.

At Work/School:

  • Go to lowest level possible, and find an interior room or hallway without windows.
  • Avoid large open spaces such as gymnasiums, auditoriums and other similar rooms.
  • Crouch on the floor, and protect your head.
  • Use sturdy furniture, such as crouching under a sturdy desk, for additional protection.
  • Use blankets, jackets, and other similar items to help cover and protect your head.
  • Look for Severe Weather Shelter Areas (located in select facilities) marked by the green sign on the right.

How you can Prepare for Tornadoes:

Make a Plan
Whether you are at home or work/school, you should have a plan in place outlining what you will do during a tornado, or any emergency. Identify shelter areas in your home and your office. While on campus, look for the green Severe Weather Shelter Area signs. Some areas may include a basement, underneath interior stairs, and interior closets. Remember to choose interior locations on the lowest level possible, away from windows. Avoid large open spaces such as auditoriums, gyms, and other rooms with large, open roof spans.

At home, know where and how to shut your utilities off (ie: gas, water and electric shut offs). This may be important to know to prevent damaged and/or leaking /exposed utilities from creating more significant damage.

Know how you and your family will communicate after tornado. Remember that phone lines may be down or busy after an emergency. Consider designating a friend or relative outside of your community to call after an emergency to report your location and condition, or to find out information on your family.

Build a Kit
Have an emergency kit for home and work that contains the essential items you may need following a disaster. Visit ReadyGuilford.org for more information on how to build a kit for you and your family. Remember, you may be on your own for several hours or several days. This includes periods of extended power outages.

Get Informed
Make sure you know how and when you will be alerted to emergencies both on campus and off campus. Get a NOAA Weather Alert Radio. This will alert you to severe weather watches and warnings impacting your area. Register for University emergency notification systems, such as text messaging. Also keep a battery powered radio with you at home and work. This will allow you to access up-to-date weather information if the power is lost.

Are you insured? – Make sure you have insurance to cover property damage. For example, if you rent an apartment or a house, you should have renters insurance. Visit http://www.ncdoi.com/ for more information.

UNCG and the surrounding region are presented each year with the threat of winter storms. While some winters may pass with little or no winter weather, the unique geographic location of the Piedmont makes this region susceptible to significant winter weather events on occasion. These events may include ice storms, snow or a mixture of snow, sleet and freezing rain.

It is important to be aware of the various types of winter events that impact this region, as well as the various hazards associated with winter storms. Many of the injuries and fatalities seen from winter storms occur from associated hazards such as vehicle accidents, fires, and other related hazards. Taking time to prepare now will help ensure the safety of you and your family during the next winter storm.

Terms to Know – Make sure you understand these commonly used winter weather terms:

  • Winter Weather Advisory
    Cold, Ice and/or Snow are expected to impact the area that may result in a “significant inconvenience” and require extra caution.
  • Winter Storm Watch
    Means that there is a potential for significant winter weather to impact the area within 48 hours.
  • Winter Storm Warning
    Means significant winter weather is either impacting the area, or is expected to impact the area within 24 hours.

How you can Prepare for Winter Weather:

Make a Plan
Flooding can come with a variety of hazards. Know what to do when a flood occurs. Remember, never drive through standing water. Avoid flood streets. If your home or office is prone to flooding, know where you will go when waters rise. You should never walk into flood waters, as moving water could easily knock you off balance. It only takes a few inches of water to knock you off balance or carry your car away.

Build a Kit
Have an emergency kit for home and work that contains the essential items you may need following a disaster. Visit ReadyGuilford.org for more information on how to build a kit for you and your family. Remember, you may be on your own for several hours or several days. This includes periods of extended power outages.

Get Informed
Make sure you know how and when you will be alerted to emergencies both on campus and off campus. Get a NOAA Weather Alert Radio. This will alert you to severe weather watches and warnings impacting your area. Register for University emergency notification systems, such as text messaging. Also keep a battery powered radio with you at home and work. This will allow you to access up-to-date weather information if the power is lost.

Know the Hazards
It is important to understand the hazards associated with winter weather. Understanding the hazards now will help you stay safe during the next winter weather event. Common hazards may include: loss of power and heat, loss of communication services, fires (as the result of candles, inappropriate use of heaters, etc…), transportation disruptions, falling trees and limbs, and medical emergencies (ie: heart attack caused by overexertion). Make sure you know how to prevent or plan to handle these hazards.

What to do during a Winter Storm:

  • If power is lost, use flashlights to light your home or office. Open flame items such as candles pose a significant fire hazard. Candles and other open flame devices are prohibited on campus due to the potential fire hazard and danger. Many of the facilities on campus are equipped with emergency lighting to help guide you to safety should you experience a power failure on campus.
  • Generators should never be used indoors.
  • Never use gas or charcoal grills indoors as a heating source or cooking appliance.
  • Use extreme caution when utilizing indoor electric and kerosene heaters. Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. Kerosene heaters are prohibited on campus, and only approved electrical heaters are allowed. If using a kerosene heater at home, always ensure you are using the correct fuel, and that you refuel the unit outdoors. Never leave a heater unattended, and always make sure there is at least 36 inches (3 feet) of clearance from combustibles around the heater.
  • Use a carbon monoxide detector in your home if you have gas heating, appliances, etc… This will help monitor and detect dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, which is a clear and odorless gas that may present many safety hazards if it leaks in your home.
  • If you must travel, allow extra time to get to your destination. Travel slowly, and allow plenty of distance from other vehicles.
  • When outside, use caution while walking and dress appropriately. Areas may be slick, even if it appears the area has been cleared of snow and ice. If you are on campus and notice an area of concern, notify your supervisor or contact the Office of Emergency Management (Phone: 256.8632 or Email: BeReady@uncg.edu). Dress warmly, in layers. Be sure to avoid overexertion, especially when removing snow and ice form walkways, driveways, etc…
  • Additional Adverse Weather Information
By Phone
  • On-Campus:
    Dial (336) 334-4444
  • Off-Campus:
    Dial 911
By Classroom Intercom Box
  • Press Campus Police call button
  • Inform the dispatcher of the emergency
By Emergency Blue Light Phones
  • Press the emergency call button
  • Beware of your surroundings
  • If safe, wait for assistance
  • Inform the dispatcher of the emergency

Some emergency situations require crucial information be shared with the University community. UNCG has multiple notification systems in place to alert individuals of emergency information during these situations. Emergency information can also be located using the following resources in the event crucial information needs to be shared during an emergency:


  1. Follow the UNCG Police Department and Office of Emergency Management on Facebook and Twitter to receive up-to-date information to help keep you safe.
    UNCG Police Department
        Facebook | Twitter (@UNCGPolice)
    Office of Emergency Management
        Facebook | Twitter (@ReadyUNCG)
  2. The UNCG Emergency Information website provides up-dated emergency information during an emergency, as well as emergency preparedness information. Visit this web site before an emergency happens to learn what to do and how you can be notified of an emergency situation.
  3. The UNCG Homepage provides up-dated information and links during an emergency.
  4. The Adverse Weather Hotline [(336) 334-4400] provides pertinent information relating to the emergency event.