UNK has an Emergency Operation Team and plans in place to deal with emergency situations on the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus. This plan is designed to provide guidance to the university’s responders and the campus community applicable to all emergencies. It has identified functional responsibilities of various organizations and offices within the University. To view the Emergency Operation Plan or request a copy, contact the Police and Parking Services Department at (308) 865-8517 or at 2507 19th Avenue or go to http://www.unk.edu/eop/
Upon the confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation involving an immediate threat to the health and safety of students or employees, the University will immediately notify the campus community of the situation through the UNKAlert! system.
The UNKAlert! system is tested each semester to make sure it is in proper working order if it has not been utilized recently.
UNK has a Drills and Exercise sub-committee of the Emergency Operations Team who design and implement exercises and trainings throughout the year to test the University’s emergency operation plans. These exercises are conducted for both the University as a whole and for single department or areas. This committee also oversees annual evacuation drills for academic buildings and bi-annual drills for the residence halls. In academic buildings, occupants are made aware of the date the drill will be held but not the time. In Residence Halls evacuation drills are conducted both announced and unannounced. Building evacuation plans are reviewed, updated and sent out at this same time. These drills are documented and any issues of concern are forwarded to the proper department to be addressed.
In 2012 some of the exercises and or trainings the University conducted or participated in were:
- A full scale hostage/active shooter exercise in conjunction with the Buffalo County Emergency Service Unit.
- A functional communications exercise.
- Evacuation drills.
- The state wide tornado drill.
- Emergency Operation Center Training.
- CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) training.
All trainings and exercises were announced ahead of time.
At the sound of the Emergency Alarm, it is the responsibility of all building occupants to evacuate immediately and proceed to predetermined assembly points, away from the building.
Building occupants are also responsible for ensuring that their visitors/customers follow the evacuation procedure described herein, and leave the building along with all other occupants.
Faculty are responsible for dismissing their classes and directing students to leave the building by the nearest exit upon hearing the alarm or being notified of an emergency.
Designated essential personnel needed to continue or shut down critical operations while an evacuation is underway are responsible for recognizing and/or determining when to abandon the operation and evacuate themselves.
Contract workers will be made familiar with the procedure outlined herein and are expected to leave the building when the alarm sounds.
Evacuation Instructions –
Whenever you hear the building alarm or are informed of a general building emergency:
- Do not panic or ignore the alarm.
- Dismiss classes in session and leave the building immediately, in an orderly fashion.
- Do not go back to your office or classroom area for any reason
- Do not use the elevators.
- Follow the quickest evacuation route from where you are
- Proceed to the designated emergency assembly point for your area. If the designated assembly point/area is unsafe or blocked due to the emergency, proceed to the alternate assembly point.
- Report to your Work Area Rep or Instructor at the assembly point to be checked off as having evacuated safely; also report any knowledge you may have of missing persons.
- Return to the building only after emergency officials or building monitors give the all-clear signal. (Silencing the alarm does not mean the emergency is over.)
Any person unable or who needs assistance to evacuate should proceed to the nearest stairwell. If it is unsafe to do so, remain in your office/classroom/ residence. Emergency evacuation personnel will check stairwells and ensure emergency response and rescue personnel are notified if someone has taken refuge there.
Supervisory personnel and course instructors are responsible for identifying and escorting individuals with disabilities located in their offices/classrooms to safety if possible. If they are not able to evacuate the individual they need to at a minimum get them to a stairwell and then notify rescue personnel.
If you are on a building floor WITHOUT an exit that goes directly to the outside, and you hear a fire alarm, or are informed of an evacuation.
- Go to a stairwell immediately.
- Inform or ask someone, a building occupant or a floor monitor in particular, to alert the first arriving emergency responders of your presence and location.
- Call 911 to ensure rescue personnel are notified of your location and your need for assistance to evacuate.
- Provide operator with your exact location, building name, floor and room numbers;
- Give phone number you are calling from;
- If possible remain by phone, police have radio contact with officers at scene and will keep you informed of the situation. (The information you provide to the emergency operator will be relayed to emergency and rescue personnel arriving at the scene, who will assist in your safe evacuation, if circumstances warrant.)
Responsibility for issuing evacuation orders rests with the Chancellor, his/her designee or by direction of the City of Kearney. When there is an immediate need to protect lives and provide for public safety, the on-scene commander can make the decision to evacuate. Individual responsibility should be taken by all faculty, staff, students and guests to ensure for their own safety.
Persons to be evacuated should be given as much warning time as possible. On slow moving events, pre-evacuation notice will be given to affected residents. All warning modes will be utilized to direct the affected population to evacuate campus. This will include use of the UNKAlert! system to notify individuals by phone, e-mail and text message. The University will also post information on the University Web page and use the television scrolling system. Wherever possible, the University building evacuation plans will be implemented and work area reps and floor monitors will walk through buildings going door-to-door to notify occupants.
The Office of Communication will ensure emergency and evacuation information is disseminated to the media on a timely basis. Instructions to the public such as traffic routes to be followed, location of temporary reception centers, and situation updates will be issued as information becomes available.
It is anticipated that the primary evacuation mode will be in private vehicle. Evacuation routes will be selected by law enforcement officials at the time of the evacuation decision. If at all possible, two-way traffic will be maintained on all evacuation routes to allow continued access for emergency vehicles. Movement instructions will be part of the warning and subsequent public information releases.
The Emergency Management Coordinator will determine the need for special transportation, coordinate the use of transportation resources to support the evacuation and announce convenient centralized locations as assembly areas. There could be cases where elderly, infirm or persons with a disability in the evacuation area will not be able to get to the assembly point or would need a special type of transportation. Provisions will be made for vehicles to transport these individuals. The public will be instructed how to notify EOC of any special transportation problems. The University Child Development Center will take priority when assessing transportation needs.
During times of evacuation University buildings will be locked down. In certain situations buildings will be pinned so that only authorized emergency personnel have access. A perimeter would be established and enforced by Police and Parking Services. An access pass system would be established.
The re-entry decision and order will be made by the Chancellor or his/her designee after the threat has passed and the evacuated area has been inspected by all necessary safety personnel.