BASED ON POLICY NUMBER AND TITLE:
12-1-0 PUBLIC SAFETY
PURPOSE: To establish institutional requirements and responsibilities for emergency evacuations of buildings during actual emergency events or drills.
- Individuals, who have information about an unusual occurrence or emergency situation either occurring on campus or that could otherwise affect the college, should immediately contact Trident Technical College's Department of Public Safety (TTCDPS) at 843-574-6911 (Emergency Line). TTCDPS will take appropriate actions, make reasonable assessments, and initiate internal and external notification consistent with the facts and circumstances presented and in accordance to TTC's Emergency Plan.
- Upon receipt of an unusual occurrence or emergency situation call, TTCDPS Communications officers will obtain all pertinent information from the complainant and will dispatch responding officers and/or key college personnel to the incident location. Responding officers will quickly assess the scene and confirm whether an actual emergency condition is present, and if so, to which of the following level:
- Normal Conditions - No emergency situation exists and no unusual response or planning activities are necessary.
- Critical Incident - A minor emergency event with limited impact to a specific segment or subgroup (i.e., a student becomes ill during class) of the college. No disruption to overall institutional operations.
- Crisis - A major emergency event which disrupts the orderly operations of a site, campus, or the entire college (i.e., power outage, active shooter, etc.). Limited casualties and moderate property damage are possible. Outside emergency resources may be required, and closure of the site, campus or entire college may be necessary.
- Disaster - A severe emergency event that impacts or extends beyond the college and not only disrupts operations and functions of the college, but also those of surrounding communities (i.e. tornado, train derailment with hazardous chemical release, etc.). Mass casualties and severe property damage are probable. Outside emergency resources may be delayed in responding or unavailable. Closure of the affected site, campus, or the entire college is necessary.
- Public Safety will activate the Emergency Alert system (EAS) when the totality of all facts, circumstances, and information known at the onset of a crisis or disaster warrants activation, or there is an immediate threat to health and safety of the campus community or larger community.
- TTC's Public Information Officer (PIO) or Marketing Department designee, will provide similar initial notification and more detailed information and updates to the campus community and larger community through the following methods:
- EAS Media
- EAS Web
- EAS InfoLine
- Where practical, the content of alert notifications will be derived from concise pre-planned statements. EAS activations do not require the issuance of separate timely notice announcements (i.e., Crime Alerts) based on the same circumstances. However, the College, through Public Safety and/or the PIO, will provide adequate follow-up information to the campus community as needed.
- Alerts may be delayed or determined to be inappropriate to send if, in the professional, judgment of Public Safety and/or other responsible authorities, notification will compromise efforts to assist a victim or to contain, respond to, or otherwise mitigate the emergency.
- When there is no known or perceived risk to the campus community, Public Safety and the PIO will only activate the EAS upon the direction of the College's Emergency Director (President) or designee.
- Upon activation of a building fire alarm, activation and direction of the Emergency Alert System or at the direction of Public Safety, all occupants (faculty/staff, students, and others) within affected buildings are required to quickly and quietly evacuate those buildings.
- Each division Vice President or his/her designee will ensure that all personnel are informed of the proper procedures and precautions to be followed during drills or actual emergency events. It is each employee's responsibility to make sure he/she knows the primary and secondary evacuation routes from his/her office, classroom, building and campus. In general, each employee should plan ahead for possible evacuations.
All college buildings have clearly marked and illuminated emergency exit signs which indicate evacuation routes. In some buildings, these signs remain illuminated at all times; in other buildings, they become illuminated when a fire alarm is activated. The College regularly tests the lighting in these signs to assure that it is adequate day and night. Additionally, buildings have emergency lighting systems which provide illumination for a short period of time, but sufficient to permit evacuation.
- Additionally, faculty members and supervisors serve as evacuation monitors/coordinators for their students and employees during drills or actual emergencies. Therefore, as preparation for an emergency, each semester and term evacuation monitor/coordinators should perform the following duties:
- Inform students/employees of primary and alternate building exits and to avoid elevators.
- Inform students/employees the location of a predetermined safe area to assemble at least 150 ft. away from the building.
- Upon activation of a building fire alarm, activation and direction of the Emergency Alert System, or a the direction of Public Safety,evacuation monitors/coordinators shall perform the following evacuation duties:
- Assist with evacuating persons with disabilities
Counseling and Career Development Services for Students with Disabilities Staff will obtain information from students who request services based upon their disabilities as to their preferred method of evacuation (e.g., with or without wheelchairs during an evacuation, etc.). This information will be included on the faculty notification form. Note: During an actual emergency, preferred methods of evacuation may not be possible. The instructor will identify a primary and alternate student/employee to assist the student during an emergency. Instructor should designate these primary and alternate students during the first class period of each semester or as soon as possible. Where feasible, faculty should assign students with disabilities to seats nearest to egress doors to expedite the evacuation.
- Instruct students/employees to evacuate quickly and take only essential belongings when notified by fire alarm activation, EAS activation, or Public Safety.
- Ensure that classroom/office doors are closed and overhead lights turned off after everyone has evacuated.
- Instruct students/employees to walk, not run, during evacuations.
- Remind students/employees/visitors to use the stairs during evacuation, not elevators.
- Direct students/employees to stairs and exits.
- Assemble as a group at least 150 ft. away from the building and at the predetermined safe area. Ensure not to assemble near fire lanes, fire hydrants, doors, streets, and other areas that could impede the access of emergency responders. Faculty members/supervisors should immediately notify Public Safety of any unaccounted students or employees as well as the last known location of individuals who refused to evacuate.
- Remain as a group and await further instructions. Do not re-enter the building until directed by Public Safety or other College officials (e.g., Facilities Management personnel). Silenced or reset fire alarms are not signals to re-enter evacuated buildings.
- Prohibit smoking during all phases of evacuation.
DRILLS, EXERCISES, AND DOCUMENTATION
A. Fire Notification System
- In order to familiarize occupants with building fire alarms (to include strobe lights and horns) and exit routes, Public Safety will conduct unannounced fire drills on a regular basis-- both day and evening classes on all campuses.
- Records concerning evacuations and drills will be maintained by Public Safety. The Director of Public Safety or his/her designee will report any policy or procedural problems or discrepancies to the Vice President of Finance and Administration.
B. Emergency Alert System (EAS)
- Public Safety, in concurrence with the PIO, will perform tests of the Emergency Alert at least twice annually. Test may be announced or unannounced.
- The PIO will publish a reminder of this procedure to faculty, staff, and students at least one time per calendar year and in conjunction with the annual test. Tests of any and all EAS components will be documented by the Director of Public Safety or his/her designee, and the PIO or his/her designee to include a description of the exercise, the date(s) and time(s) of the exercise(s)-- which will likely occur during day and evening classes, and whether the exercise(s) were announced in advance.
MAINTENANCE AND CHECKS OF FIRE NOTIFICATION AND FIRE SUPPRESSION SYSTEMS
A. Public Safety will check fire extinguishers and alarm systems in each building on each campus monthly. Discrepancies found by officers during these checks, or during drills and actual events will be reported to Facilities Management within three (3) business days.
B. Facilities Management will ensure that all fire extinguishers and alarm systems are inspected semi-annually or annually as required by fire regulations, federal, state, or local laws. Facilities Management will preserve all inspection and maintenance records.