1. What is a lockdown?
A lockdown of a building or group of buildings is an emergency procedure intended to secure and protect occupants who are in the proximity of an immediate threat. This procedure is used when it may be more dangerous to evacuate a building than stay inside. By controlling entry/exit and movement within a facility, emergency personnel are better able to contain and handle any threats. All internal and external doors and windows must be locked or secured. Occupants inside the building(s) are to remain inside their secured rooms and await escort from emergency personnel.
2. What is the role of Faculty and Supervisors during a lockdown?
As with any campus emergency, the expectation of students is that their professor, instructor or supervisor will provide leadership and reassurance throughout the event. It is therefore very important that Faculty and Supervisors familiarize themselves with the lockdown procedures and be prepared to secure their classrooms should it be required.
3. How are individuals notified of the need to lockdown?
There are various communication tools available to alert individuals when there is an emergency on Campus. In accordance with the University’s emergency communication protocol, the method for disseminating emergency alerts will be based on the situation and building(s) affected. Notification may come from a departmental administrator, over a PA or public broadcast system, via electronic signage, by email or directly from emergency personnel. A variety of emergency notification tools will be used to ensure the message is delivered as quickly as possible.
Alerts and updates will be broadcast on the UA website: www.alaska.edu.
4. Do not open the door once it has been secured until emergency personnel are at the door. a) How will I know that it’s not the perpetrator pretending to be a police officer?
Emergency personnel will identify themselves and provide individuals with specific information, such as a password. If a password is used, it will be communicated early in the response and only to the occupants of the affected building(s). For the safety of all involved this password must remain confidential. Emergency personnel will also have identification and keys for all doors. If you have doubt as to the identity of any individual, remain secured inside and request that they open the door.
b) What should I do if an individual inside the room I am in insists on opening the secured door, potentially exposing the other occupants?
Individuals who refuse to follow instructions from emergency personal during a lockdown risk endangering themselves and others. Appealing to the individual’s respect for their own safety and the safety of others is encouraged. In exceptional circumstances, Faculty and Staff may choose actions they deem personally necessary to reduce risks to themselves and others with whom they are locked down.
5. Do not use or hide in washrooms.
Restrooms do not offer a secondary escape. There are no alternate doors or windows. There are few places to hide and noises are often amplified which can bring attention to your location.
6. Do not travel down long corridors.
Unless you are very close to an exit, do not travel down long hallways to get to one. Hallways offer limited areas of refuge should you encounter a threatening individual.
7. Do not assemble in large open areas.
Large open areas, such as cafeterias, generally do not have doors that can be secured and offer limited areas in which to hide. An assailant may intentionally target these areas believing that they can create a larger impact in populated gathering places. If you find yourself in an open area assess your surroundings and proximity to adjacent rooms and exits. Should you need to remain in an open area, attempt to put an obstacle or barrier in front of yourself for protection. If it safe to do so, you may consider relocating if you can access a room that can be secured.
8. Do not call 911 unless you have immediate concern for your safety, the safety of others or feel you have critical information that will assist emergency personnel in the response.
Knowledge of the location or direction of the threat, having credible information on the motivation or intention of the perpetrator(s), or requiring personal emergency assistance would justify a call to 911.
Keep in mind that calling 911 during an emergency has potential to overload the telephone system, thereby creating additional challenges for emergency response personnel and emergency notification systems.
Consider that when you make any telephone call during a lockdown you risk being heard, potentially exposing your location and jeopardizing your safety.
911 Operators will not be able to provide you with additional information on the situation, expected duration of the lockdown or police response.
9. If the fire alarm is activated, remain where you are and wait for further instructions over a PA or portable loudspeaker.
A perpetrator may attempt to have individuals evacuate from their secured rooms by pulling the fire alarm. Emergency personnel will immediately provide instructions to occupants if they are to evacuate or remain secured. Consider your closest exit and an alternate in the event that you are directed to evacuate. Be assured that police would be working with the fire department in evaluating the appropriate response to this type of occurrence.
10. If you encounter or are held hostage by an assailant.
It is important to recognize that every situation is unique and that you must use your own judgment to protect yourself. Try to stay calm, avoid sudden movements and refrain from provoking the individual.
Investigations following recent school shootings have determined that in almost all cases at least one other person was aware of the perpetrator’s intent to do harm. This intent could be expressed by the perpetrator days, weeks or months before the event.