Table of Contents


This Emergency Reference Guide is provided to assist you in responding quickly and effectively to a variety of situations. The information and instructions contained herein are not intended as an exhaustive reference for any of the situations addressed. They are simply provided to assist in helping to assure your personal safety in the event of these particular occurrences.

Introduction and General Information

An emergency is any situation, actual or imminent, that endangers the safety or lives of students, employees or visitors on Willamette University property.

This guide is designed as a quick reference to help you respond immediately and effectively to a variety of emergency situations. It is recommended that you read this guide in advance of an emergency, so you are prepared.

  • The instructions, in this guide, are intended to be used during an emergency. They only provide a brief summary and overview of University policies and procedures.
  • Willamette University has an Emergency Preparedness Plan that will be activated in the event of an emergency.
  • The Office of Campus Safety is designated as the Emergency Response Teams meeting location, unless the emergency makes this location unusable. If it is unusable, an alternate location will be chosen from a prearranged list.
  • During emergency situations, avoid making telephone calls except those necessary to deal with the emergency.
  • If you have a disability and could require special accommodations and assistance in an emergency, please notify your supervisor or Human Resources ahead of time. All information will be kept confidential. (Please see Disability Issues on page ERG-18.)
  • Updates to this guide will be provided as necessary.

Remember: Time is critical in responding to any emergency. The safety of people always comes first, before the protection of property.

Requesting Emergency Assistance

For assistance in a medical or safety emergency dial x6911.

When you call:

  • Identify yourself and the specific location of the emergency. Tell what has occurred. Be concise and factual.
  • Relate known or suspected people with injuries.
  • Identify immediate help needed.
  • If appropriate or directed to do so, dial 9-911.
  • Notify your building captain.

Many people ask, “Why should we call Campus Safety at x6911 instead of 911 directly?” There are three important reasons to first call Campus Safety with any emergency:

  1. Campus Safety officers are on campus 24 hours a day and can respond to an emergency faster. Also, WEMS (Willamette Emergency Medical Services) personnel are on campus during the academic year.
  2. Campus Safety is responsible to make sure that police, fire and medical responders are able to access the areas where an emergency is occurring. This includes a specific building address, unlocking buildings and rooms and escorting responders to the location of the incident. These responders are often unable to locate victims without the aid of Campus Safety.
  3. If assistance from 911 is required, Campus Safety will make this call and are able to convey the essential information to get the fastest response.

Your Personal Responsibilities

Your personal safety is of the utmost concern. Therefore, your primary responsibility, in the event of any emergency, is to see that you respond in such a way as to best assure your own safety. If you are disabled by the event, you will not be available to assist others. Your secondary responsibility is to assist any others in your immediate area in safely responding. Finally, with your safety assured, you are free to be a part of the larger team response.

If You Are Off Campus

If you are off campus when an emergency occurs, your assistance on campus may be required. If your job responsibilities are such that your assistance will be critical to responding to the emergency, you should report to campus when notified of the event. If the emergency has also affected you or your family, you will need to assess your ability to respond.

If your job responsibilities do not require you to respond to campus, your assistance may be appreciated. However, you should try to determine if your presence will be helpful or whether it is safer and/or better that you not respond. Attempt to ascertain this information before responding to campus. Then, please report to the volunteer center, which is most often designated as the Montag Center.

Media Communications

Emergency situations attract media interest and requests for accurate, timely information. For this reason, managing the University’s interaction and communication with the media through a central point of contact is an important part of emergency response procedures.

Emergency actions:

  • If you are contacted by the media, refer the individual to the Office of Marketing Communications. Responses to media inquiries should be limited to the following statement: “In order to ensure that we provide the most timely, accurate information, please contact Media Relations at (503) 370-6274.”
  • Call the Office of Marketing Communications at x6274 and report who has contacted you and for what reason.
  • If the Office of Marketing Communications is closed, contact Campus Safety at x6911.

Instruct all employees and colleagues to direct all media inquiries to the Office of Marketing Communications at x6274 or to the Emergency Command Center (if one has been established).

Armed Intruder/Emergency Lockdown

Lockdown is used when an armed intruder enters campus or is in a building. Lockdown is meant to keep persons in one safe location when there is an unknown threat outside of the class room or building. If there is a threat to the campus from an armed intruder, immediately call Campus Safety at x6911.

There are three concerns for Lockdown:

When the threat is outside of the building

  • Secure all exterior doors.
  • Close drapes/blinds (if safe to do so) then stay away from the windows.
  • Classrooms and offices: lie face down, flat on the floor; cover head, get under tables/desks.
  • Stay put! Move only if remaining where you are is more dangerous.
  • In other areas (e.g., playing fields, academic quads, or open spaces of campus.), “duck and cover.”
  • In open areas, use object immediately available (e.g., vehicles, trees, telephone poles, etc.).
  • If in a completely open area, lay down and remain motionless.

When the threat is inside of the building

  • Secure all exterior doors.
  • Classrooms: Secure the room and move everyone along the wall closest to the hallway door.
  • Shut off lights to the classroom.
  • Silence all cell phones.
  • Open drapes and blinds (if safe to do so).
  • Keep everyone as quiet as possible.

Additional Considerations

  • Get students inside the building into classrooms as quickly as possible.
  • Students who are locked-out should seek shelter in the closest available room.
  • Do not allow students outside until the “all clear” is given by a University official or police.
  • Students and staff who are outside should proceed to a secondary evacuation location.
  • Students who are inside the building but are locked-out of a classroom have two options: run outside as quickly as possible or remain where they are.
  • Going back to the classroom is a mistake for two reasons:
  • The student may run into the intruder in the hallway while returning to the classroom.
  • Once the classroom is locked and the class has taken a defensive position, the door should not be opened under any circumstances unless the police give instruction to do so.

Medical Emergencies

Emergency Actions – In the event of an injury or other medical emergency:

  • Call x6911
  • Identify your location: building name, floor, room/office
  • Describe the situation:
  • What has happened
  • Types of injuries
  • Help needed
  • Campus Safety will call WEMS (Willamette Emergency Medical Services) and/or 911 if appropriate.

Automated External Defibrillators (AED)

There are several Automated External Defibrillators (AED) on campus. They are located in the following locations: The main lobby of the Sparks Center; Kaneko Commons in the hall just outside the atrium; Men’s locker room at McCulloch Stadium; The reception desk at the Oregon Civic Justice Center (formerly YWCA). Campus Safety has two, one in the Campus Safety vehicle and one in the Campus Safety Office. These devices provide simple verbal instructions for the untrained; however, it is highly recommended that the user take CPR training before using these. If assistance is required call Campus Safety before using an AED.


Know the location of the fire emergency resources in your area:

  • Fire Alarm pull stations
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Fire exits
  • Evacuation routes
  • Assembly site

Emergency Actions – If a fire occurs, or you detect smoke or a burning odor:

Pull the closest fire alarm to initiate building evacuation.

  • Call x6911 and report:
    • The location of the fire
    • The suspected cause and current status of the fire.
    • Your name and phone number
  • Do NOT use elevators.
  • Use a fire extinguisher to fight the fire, if there is no danger to your personal safety in doing so.
  • Move away from the exterior doors of the building to allow emergency responders to access the building. Encourage others to move away from the doors as well.
  • Follow the instructions of Campus Safety and fire department personnel. Do not re enter the building until you are informed that it is safe to do so.

For Persons with Mobility Impairment

First, always assume it is a REAL FIRE and follow the general evacuation procedures listed in "Watching Out for Yourself on Campus" published by the Office of Campus Safety (Call x6911 for a copy).

Guidelines Specific to Individuals With Mobility Impairments

  • COLLINS SCIENCE CENTER and HATFIELD LIBRARY: These buildings offer safe areas. Individuals who use wheelchairs or other assistive technology for mobility should be directed to those designated safe areas.
  • The LIBRARIES, SPARKS CENTER, and ANY OTHER AREA WHERE THERE ARE RANDOM GROUPS: An employee(s) must be designated on each floor to make a thorough check of carrels, book stacks, locker rooms, etc. to make certain there are no individuals needing special assistance in the area.
  • ALL OTHER BUILDINGS: The procedures listed below should be followed. The Fire Department will carry out the evacuation.

Until the Fire Department Arrives

  • Assign a student to immediately call x6911 (cell phone or nearest phone). Report that there is an individual who uses a wheelchair or other assistive device in Hall _____, Floor _____, Room _____. Instruct the student to report back.
  • The professor (or an assigned person) is to remain in the room with the student while the class follows usual evacuation procedures. KEEP the door closed.
  • Never enter an elevator. It commonly stops working when the fire alarm rings.
  • If the fire is in the room with the student, the student and professor should go into the hall to the nearest stairwell and wait for assistance. (All hallway doors should be closed.)
  • NEVER CARRY AN INDIVIDUAL UNLESS IT IS A MATER OF IMMINENT DANGER. IF A STUDENT MUST BE CARRIED, LEAVE THE WHEELCHAIR BEHIND and follow the instructions of the individual as to how he/she is best transported.

Natural Disasters/Emergency Actions

Snow/ice, floods and earthquakes can all pose dangers for the University.


In heavy rain, be aware of flash floods. If you are advised to evacuate:

  • Secure the building.
  • Lock the doors and windows
  • Calmly leave immediately.


Emergency Response

  • If you are indoors during an earthquake, keep calm and take cover under a heavy table or desk. Stay away from glass, windows or anything that could fall, like a bookcase.
  • If you are outdoors, move away from buildings, street lights and utility wires.
  • Do not get in an elevator during an earthquake!
  • After an earthquake, be prepared for aftershocks. Aftershocks are follow-up earthquakes that are usually smaller than the first one. They are dangerous because they can cause things that are weakened in the first earthquake to fall down.


  • Monitor approaching winter storm conditions. Freezing rain, sleet, heavy snow or sustained high winds can all pose a threat.
  • Ensure that employees are aware of cold weather safety rules and understand University policy for operating and closing under adverse weather conditions.

Chemical Spills

In Willamette University Educational Facilities
It is the responsibility of the faculty and the lab instructors to know the characteristics of the chemicals with which they are working and take the proper precautions to protect themselves, their students and the community by containing a spill.

In Willamette University Work Areas
It is the responsibility of the employees to know the characteristics of the chemicals with which they are working and take the proper precautions to protect themselves and the community by containing a spill.

Emergency Actions – For Any Chemical Spill

  • Notify Campus Safety immediately.
  • First priority is First Aid. Any spill that results in personal exposure should be treated immediately: Eyes/skin contact: Assist the person to a sink/eye wash station and flush eyes or affected skin area thoroughly and continuously for 15 minutes. Removed contaminated clothing making sure not to contaminate yourself in the processing of helping.
  • Ask bystanders to either help or stay out of the way.
  • Evacuate the building if the spill is severe or dangerous. Consider using a fire pull station to evacuate the building.
  • Identify the type of chemical and its hazardous characteristics to Campus Safety and other responders. Identify:
    • Name of chemical
    • Approximate quantity
    • Location of spill
    • Flammability?
    • Toxic?
    • Corrosive?

General Cleanup Procedures – For minor spills Only
Obtain a Materials Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for the chemical that was spilled.

  • Only trained personnel should attempt to clean up spills. Cleaning up chemical spills is dangerous and should only be performed by professionally trained persons.
  • Clear all persons out of the area who are not directly involved in the cleanup.
  • Do not re-enter the area until the all-clear has been given by the team decontaminating the spill area.

Biological Spills (Blood)

The Bloodborne Pathogens Act of 1990 requires that spills of blood and blood based biological spills be reported and the spill decontaminated.
Emergency Procedures

  • Call Campus Safety at x6911.
  • Report if there is a need for medical attention for anyone at the scene.
  • Identify the location of the blood spill.
  • Keep bystanders away from the area so that no one becomes contaminated and the spill does not spread to other areas.
  • Wait until help has arrived to begin cleanup procedures.

Menacing Persons/Weapons Threat

Emergency Actions

  • Call Campus Safety at x6911.
  • If you are in a position to explain your situation, give as much information as possible. Give your specific location.
  • If you are not able to give information because the suspect is present and relaying information could put you at risk, use the following “code” word: “Starbucks.” This refers to the coffee company and can be used in a sentence about going for coffee at Starbucks. Use of the word “Starbucks” will indicate to Campus Safety personnel that you are in potential danger and the suspect is present with you.
  • Remain calm and do not make sudden movements.
  • If it is safe to do so, leave the area.

Bomb Threat

Emergency Actions – When a bomb threat is received by phone.

  • If the threat of explosion is immediate, evacuate all people from the premises at once. If this can not easily be done in a timely manner, activate the fire alarm system by pulling a pull station.
  • Try to get as much information as possible about the location and description of the bomb, and the caller. Use the check list on the following page to make note of the caller’s attributes and threats.
  • Stay on the line only as long as the caller continues to provide useful information.
  • Call Campus Safety immediately at x6911.

Emergency Actions – When a suspicious item is discovered.

  • If you find an item you suspect is a bomb, DO NOT touch it, move it, or disturb it.
  • Call Campus Safety immediately at x6911.
  • Keep other persons away from the area until help arrives.

Bomb Threat Check List

Use this form to record all information if you receive a bomb threat call.
Be calm and courteous. Listen and do not interrupt.
Exact words of the caller:

Questions to ask:

  1. When is the bomb going to explode?
  2. Where is the bomb right now?
  3. What kind of bomb is it?
  4. What does the bomb look like?
  5. Why did you place it?
  6. Where are you calling from?

Callers Voice Attributes:

  • Male
  • Female
  • Adult
  • Juvenile
  • Accent
  • Irrational
  • Foul
  • Well Spoken
  • Incoherent
  • Calm
  • Angry
  • Excited
  • Slow
  • Rapid
  • Soft
  • Loud
  • Laughter
  • Crying
  • Normal
  • Slurred
  • Unusual
  • Nasal
  • Deep
  • Clearing Throat
  • Breathing
  • High
  • Familiar
  • Cracking Voice
  • Taped
  • Disguised
  • Message read?
  • Raspy

If the voice is familiar, who did it sound like?

Did the caller indicate knowledge of Willamette University? If so, how?

Background Sounds

  • Street noises
  • PA system
  • Voices
  • Music
  • On/Off Campus
  • Motor
  • Quiet
  • Office Machines
  • Animals
  • Static
  • Factory Machines
  • Aircraft

Name _______________________________________________ Department
Date Received ________________________________________ Time

Take this checklist with you as you evacuate the building.

Utility Failure

Electrical Power Loss

  • Call the Physical Plant at x6003. After hours, call Campus Safety at x6911.
  • Use flashlights to navigate safely.
  • Turn off electrical equipment and computer equipment. Some equipment could be damaged, if left on, when the power is restored. Do not unplug your telephone.
  • Recheck equipment when power is restored.

Water and Heat

  • Call the Physical Plant at x6003. After hours, call Campus Safety at x6911.


  • For normal repairs, call WITS at x6004.
  • The emergency phones, located in red boxes on the outside of most campus buildings, have phone lines that will work in the event of a internal phone switch outage.
  • If you need to reach Campus Safety, and are unable to do so using the campus phone system, call 503-851-6912, or call 911 from an emergency phone.

Severe Weather

Should climatic conditions become severe and you question whether the campus will be open for regular classes and events, please call 370-6300 after 6 a.m. and listen to the recording for advisories. Please DO NOT call Campus Safety for closure information. The volume of calls is enormous and ties up emergency phone lines.

Closure information is also available at the following web site:

This web site is updated and this information is fed to local radio and television stations in the Portland area.

University Closure

Official closing of the University for unscheduled reasons will be only by order of the President’s office.

Emergency Actions

  • Notice of closing during working hours will be given by supervisors to employees.
  • Regardless of the reasons for closing, some employees will be expected to remain at, or report to work. Employees should contact their supervisors if they are uncertain.

Harassing/Obscene Phone Calls

If you receive harassing calls, the best way to handle the situation is to immediately hang up without saying anything to the caller. If the caller does not receive a response, it may discourage them from calling.

  • If the calls are threatening in any way, or are continuous, call Campus Safety at x6911.
  • If any harassing or obscene messages are left in your voice mail box, save those messages so they can be used as evidence.

Injury or Death Notification

Faulty/Staff Members

  • The Appropriate Vice President or Dean, and/or the Office of Spiritual and Religious Life are responsible for informing employees about the death or injury of a co-worker.
  • The Office of Marketing Communications is responsible for all contacts with media. Do not release any information to the media. Direct all media inquiries to 503-370-6274.
  • The name of the affected person should not be released to any off campus person other than emergency medical responders and police.

Family Members of an Employee

Death or a serious injury to a member of an employee’s family is an emotional situation that requires sensitivity. When informing the employee while at work, the person making notification should do the following:

  • Verify the information regarding the situation and confirm the identity carefully.
  • Provide privacy when informing the employee.
  • Offer transportation or other assistance, if desired.
  • Consider informing other department members of the situation, if appropriate.

Injury or Death Notification: Students

  • The Dean of Student Affairs, or his/her designate, is responsible for informing the appropriate departments and other students of the death or injury of a student. The Office of Marketing Communications is responsible for all contacts with the media. Do not release any information to the media. Direct all media inquiries to 503 370 6274.
  • The name of the affected person should not be released to any off campus person other than emergency medical responders and police.
  • The University’s Counseling Center and the Office of Spiritual and Religious Life should be notified so they can be prepared for requests from students for assistance.
  • Campus Safety or the Police may secure the area, and no one should be permitted to these secured areas without the permission of Campus Safety or the Police.

Emergency Response Team

The Emergency Response Team (ERT) is a group of University employees whose job responsibilities make them critical participants in a campus emergency. This team is lead by the President, or his designate. Anyone on the team is authorized to activate the team by initiating a call out of the group. A Campus Safety officer on duty could also activate the team if a serious emergency occurred and an immediate response was required. Each team member has an appointed designee to respond on his or her behalf in the event that they are unavailable. Either the ERT member or their designee should be available by telephone at all times.

When the Team assembles and/or as the emergency requires, other University employees are called out to assist the team and with the emergency. An emergency phone number call list has been created and is updated quarterly to ensure accurate names and phone numbers are available.

When the Team is activated, they should report to the Office of Campus Safety unless otherwise instructed. The Office of Campus Safety is the primary Emergency Communication Center.

Emergency Preparedness Equipment

The University has purchased and assembled a supply of emergency equipment for the purpose of aiding in the response to an emergency. The Physical Plant has a supply of tools and materials to assist with many types of emergencies and these will be utilized as necessary. The Emergency Preparedness Equipment is designated, inventoried and stored for immediate access and response. The materials are located in the basement of Doney Hall below the offices of Residence Life and Housing and Campus Safety. The room is located on the north wall and is clearly marked. An emergency key is located near the door for access in the event that an employee with a key is not immediately available.

Emergency Communications Center

The Emergency Communications Center is the center that is designated to coordinate the response to the emergency. The Office of Campus Safety is the primary location that has been chosen to be the ECC. If the Office of Campus Safety is not usable because of the nature of the emergency, one of the following locations will be chosen:

  • Hatfield Library
  • College of Law
  • University Center
  • Olin Science
  • Art Building
  • Roger’s Music Center

Each of these buildings have emergency backup power.

Campus Evacuation Plan

Emergency Actions – If an emergency exists where is no longer safe to occupy campus buildings or property, those areas must be evacuated.

  • The primary evacuation location for individual buildings is either Sparks Center (Cone Field House) or Smith Auditorium.
  • If evacuation further from campus is required, McCulloch Stadium is the primary off campus location.
  • If an emergency would require an evacuation to a location even further from campus, such as a chemical spill, emergency personnel will designate an evacuation location.
  • Call Campus Safety immediately at x6911.

Where do volunteers report?

  • In the event of an emergency, people often want to respond and help. Help is appreciated, but needs to be coordinated to maximize efficiency and the safety of the volunteers.
  • Volunteers are asked to report to the Montag Center for briefing and assignments, rather than reporting directly to the location of incident. This ensures that volunteers are checked in and have the necessary information about the incident. It also helps ensure that volunteers are assigned to tasks where they are most needed and suited.

Emergency 866 (800) Number Information

The University has an 866 number that should be used in the event of an emergency. Information will be updated, via a recorded message, on this 866 number if an emergency takes place.

The purpose of the 866 number is to avoid jamming communications in our internal phone system. The 866 number is located in an off-campus location and will operate even if the campus system is jammed or nonfunctional.

This number is 866-200-2089


Willamette University

Campus Safety

Salem Campus

University Services Building
Office Hours:
7:30 am–4 pm (M-F)
Officer available 24/7/365 at

Portland Campus

Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design
Office Hours:
8 am–4 pm (M-F)
Officer available 24/7/365 at

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