Emergency Procedures

For all emergencies, immediately contact GWCCA Public Safety at (404)223-4911 or dial 911.

Below are response procedures for emergency situations that could impact our campus.

Active Shooter
For individuals on campus, follow these procedures:
Remain as calm as possible
Determine your course of action. The best way to survive an active shooter incident is to not be where the shooter is and to not go where he or she can see you. You have two choices:

AVOID (Evacuate)
Exit the building immediately, if it is safe to do so
Move quickly to a safe location away from the shooter
Leave belongings behind that will slow you down
When you see police vehicles, move toward them when it is safe to do so with your hands on your head and presenting no threat to them
Follow the directions of any emergency responders you encounter

DENY (Secure-in-Place)
Go to the nearest room or office
Close, lock, and barricade the door with any heavy furniture possible
Cover windows, if possible
Turn out the lights, if possible
Silence all noise producing sources, including your cell phones
If you can provide any valuable information to the responding units, such as the whereabouts of the shooter, call 404-223-4911

DEFEND If you are faced with the shooter, you have a choice to make. You can stay still and hope they don’t shoot you, run for an exit while zigzagging, or even attack the shooter. This is very dangerous. A moving target is much harder to hit than a stationary one and the last thing the shooter will expect is to be attacked by an unarmed person. Any option you choose may still result in a negative response.

If someone near you has a life-threatening injury, and it is possible for you to safely provide first aid, do so up to but not exceeding your level of training

If a suspicious package or device is located, follow these procedures:

  1. Do not move, jar, or touch the package
  2. Notify the GWCCA Department of Public Safety immediately at 404-223-4911 and be prepared to provide the following information:
    • What makes the package suspicious?
    • Are there any liquids leaking from the package?
    • Are there any oily stains on the package?
    • Are there any odors coming from the package?
    • Are there any wires protruding from the package?
    • How long has the package been there?
  3. Alert others in your area and begin an evacuation of the immediate area
  4. Do not use cell phones or radios near the suspicious package or device
  5. Notify the Crisis Coordinator in your building to assist with the evacuation
  6. Attempt to prevent others from entering the area near the suspicious package or device, if possible
  7. Proceed to an evacuation area at least 1000 feet from the center of the building

If a Tornado Warning is issued, the following steps will be taken:

  1. The GWCCA Department of Public Safety – Office of Emergency Management will initiate the mass notification procedure for a Tornado Warning, which includes the following activations:
    • Mass notification text, email, app push, and phone call
    • Crisis Coordinator radios
    • Facility public address system
  2. All individuals outside when the warning is issued should take cover in the nearest building
  3. All individuals inside when the warning is issued should remain indoors
  4. Individuals should take appropriate shelter on the lowest possible floor in interior rooms away from windows and doors. When determining the best shelter area, consider the following guidelines:
    • Avoid areas near glass
    • Avoid areas near exterior walls
    • Avoid areas with high roofs
    • Avoid areas with wide-span roofs
    • Avoid non-structural hazards, such as heavy equipment on shelving
    • Do not enter elevators during a tornado warning
  5. Help direct special needs populations and visitors to safe sheltering areas
  6. Take direction from Public Safety and Crisis Coordinators in the building in which you are sheltering
  7. Crouch close to the ground, if possible, and cover the back of your head and neck with your hands
  8. Remain in your sheltering location until the all-clear is issued from the GWCCA Department of Public Safety – Office of Emergency Management

If you receive a bomb threat via telephone, follow these procedures:

  1. If your phone is equipped with caller ID, write down the caller’s number
  2. Listen closely to the caller and take notes regarding the threat
  3. Attempt to have another nearby person to listen to the call with you to capture additional information.
  4. As soon as possible, contact or have someone else contact the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911 to notify them of the threat
  5. Provide the communications officers with as much information as possible, including the following:
    • Information about the caller’s voice
    • All information provided by the caller, including the location of the device, the detonation method, when the device will detonate, why the device was placed on campus, etc.
    • Name and address of caller, if known
    • Possible gender and/or age of the caller
    • Number the threat was received on
    • Length of the call
    • Identifying background noises

Note: Office workers are encouraged to view the video on the follow web page: https://www.dhs.gov/what-to-do-bomb-threat

If an explosion or detonation of an explosive device occurs, follow these procedures:

  1. Immediately evacuate the area
  2. Help others evacuate, as needed
  3. Notify the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911 as soon as possible and advise them of the situation
  4. Move to a safe location, preferably away from potential travel routes of emergency response vehicles
  5. Avoid using a cell phone or radio
  6. Follow any directions provided by emergency responders

Any person discovering a fire or smoky conditions should immediately locate the closest fire alarm pull station and activate the fire alarm to provide the building occupants the greatest amount of time to evacuate. Immediate notification of any fire or smoky conditions should be made to the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911.

During a fire alarm activation, follow these procedures:

  1. Evacuate the building immediately by using the nearest safe exit
  2. If there is smoke in the building, remain below the smoke by staying close to the ground and even crawling to exit the building if necessary. Most fatalities related to fires are due to smoke inhalation.
  3. Try to remain calm and assist others when evacuating
  4. Close and secure all doors as you exit
  5. If possible, evacuate with your department or office personnel for better accountability
  6. Proceed to an area at least 300 feet from the building
  7. Do not block access routes to the building that may be utilized by emergency responders
  8. Await further instructions
  9. Just because the alarm stops sounding does not mean it is safe to re-enter the building
  10. Decisions regarding re-entry into the building will normally be made by the responding fire department.
  11. If it is safe to do so, you know where the fire is, and you have been trained on the proper use of a fire extinguisher, locate the nearest fire extinguisher and attempt to extinguish any small fires. Remember to implement the PASS (Pull, Aim, Squeeze, and Sweep) technique when using a fire extinguisher
  12. If your first attempt to extinguish the fire using a fire extinguisher fails, exit the building immediately
  13. Never re-enter a building once evacuated, unless emergency response personnel advise it is safe to do so.

A Psychological Crisis exists when an individual is threatening to harm himself/herself or another person, or is out of touch with reality, exhibiting uncontrollable behavior or hallucinations. Persons in this condition may also exhibit radical changes in their demeanor with little or no warning.

If you observe a person undergoing psychological distress, notify the GWCCA Department of Public Safety immediately at 404-223-4911. Be prepared to provide the following information:

  1. Your name and the name of the person suffering distress, if known
  2. Location
  3. Observed behaviors or symptoms

Do not confront or attempt to detain the individual as this may exacerbate the situation. If you are unsure whether the person poses an immediate threat to yourself or others use extreme caution. Your protection and the protection of those around you are the first priority.

A medical emergency is any situation in which a person or persons become ill or injured and require immediate medical attention.

In the event of a medical emergency perform the following actions:

  1. Immediately call the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911 to activate emergency response personnel. Provide the GWCCA Department of Public Safety with all available information regarding the patient and situation including the following:
    • Your name
    • Nature of the emergency
    • Location of the ill or injured person
    • Condition of the ill or injured person
    • Any existing dangerous conditions
  2. If you are comfortable doing so, administer medical assistance up to the level of your training. Never exceed your level of training in a medical situation. You may do more harm than good if you exceed your level of training.

In the event of a power failure:

  1. Immediately report the outage to the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911 who will handle notification to Facility Management personnel to respond
  2. If the power is out for more than five (5) minutes, and if emergency lighting does not work, initiate an evacuation of the building
  3. Follow the evacuation protocol and assist others, as needed
  4. Never try to “fix” any electrical problems on your own

Anyone who believes they smell gas should:

  1. Immediately report the smell to the GWCCA Department of Public Safety at 404-223-4911
  2. Follow evacuation protocols
  3. Evacuations should be uphill and upwind of the affected area

Water utility failures will be handled on a case-by-case basis depending on the expected duration and extent of the failure. Failures of the water system may require an evacuation or the initiation of a Fire Watch for the affected buildings. Water utility failures will likely cause plumbing issues (i.e. no flushing, water fountains, food preparation), which can become a critical issue. All decisions regarding proper response will be made jointly by the GWCCA Department of Public Safety and Facility Management personnel.M