Are you Prepared?

Employees can do much to prepare for the impact of the many hazards they face, including hazards like floods, earthquakes, and pandemics. Like individuals and families, workplaces should all have site-specific emergency plans.

Contact your school or department emergency coordinator for more information on your department-specific emergency plans. Become familiar with these plans and learn about the different types of hazards/emergencies that could occur and the emergency actions for each.

Action Plans

The emergency action plans below provide information and identify appropriate behaviors in the event of an emergency. Knowing these plans will result in fewer and less severe injuries.

For all emergencies: Dial 9-1-1

  • Be prepared to answer the following questions:
    • Nature of the emergency (e.g. fire, smell of smoke, medical emergency)
    • Location/address
    • Building name or number, floor/room or area
    • Your name and call back number
    • Describe the situation
  • For medical emergencies, the dispatcher will request additional information:
    • Nature of the medical emergency (e.g., conscious/unconscious, breathing/not breathing)
    • Victim’s age (approximate if uncertain) and sex
    • What help, if any, is being given
  • Send someone to meet and escort emergency response personnel to the incident location, if available.
  • If you are the person who called 9-1-1, identify yourself to emergency response personnel upon their arrival and be prepared to provide additional details regarding the incident. If the area, floor or building has been evacuated – notify your Floor/Area Warden – he/she will direct you to the Incident Command Post and be prepared to provide additional details to emergency response personnel.
  • Provide assistance to responding emergency personnel, if requested; do not get in their way.


  • If inside, stay inside; if outside, stay outside. DO NOT RUN OUTDOORS – You will be in danger from falling glass and other debris.
  • If indoors:
  • Drop to the ground.
  • Take cover immediately under a sturdy object, such as a desk, table or chair; if no cover is available, drop to the floor next to an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms; stay away from windows/glass, tall furniture, masonry walls, hanging objects, and other potential falling objects; if you use a wheelchair, lock the wheels and cover your head.
  • Hold onto the desk/other – be ready to move with it until the shaking stops.
  • If outdoors: Move to a clear, open area away from buildings, trees and overhead power lines if you can safely do so; avoid power lines, trees, signs, buildings, vehicles, and other hazards, and drop to the ground. If you are driving, pull to the side of the road and stop; avoid stopping under overhead hazards or near buildings.
  • Wait for the shaking to stop.

After the Shaking Stops

  • Remain calm. When the shaking stops, look around to make sure it is safe to move.
  • Evacuate the building and follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures if:
    • It was a major earthquake (violent shaking, that is, items falling over and/or you are concerned for your personal safety).
    • There is immediate danger from fire, gas leak, signs of structural damage, or other conditions where it is unsafe to remain indoors.
    • Instructed to do so by the emergency response personnel or a Facility/Floor/Area Warden, or if evacuation/fire alarms are sounding.
    • NOTE: For major earthquakes you may be instructed to move to designated campus regional evacuation areas and wait for further instructions.
  • DO NOT use elevators!
  • Check for injured, missing or trapped persons. Give aid to those in need. Do not attempt to move injured persons unless there is a danger of further injury from a collapsing structure, fire, etc.
  • Check for building damage and any hazards (e.g., utility disruption, broken pipes, chemical spills, broken glass), and isolate area. If you are evacuating a building, check for damage and any hazards as you exit. If there is a fire, follow FIRE procedures.
  • Call 9-1-1 for life-threatening or medical emergencies, fire, gas leak, flooding, hazardous material spills, or any other situation that may threaten personnel, property or the environment.
  • Provide a report to your Warden and supervisor. Report if there are any injured, missing or trapped persons; report if there is any building damage and/or hazards. (If the building is evacuated, Warden(s) will be at the Assembly Area(s).)
  • Refrain from using landline and cell phones, except to report life-threatening emergencies; hang-up phones that have shaken off the hook.
  • Prepare for aftershocks (refer to Section: BEFORE THE EMERGENCY – PREPARE FOR EARTHQUAKES). If the stability of the building is in doubt, leave the area. Avoid potential falling hazards. Review your Employee Emergency Action Plan; inspect your workplace emergency kits.

Precautions and Guidance

  • Be aware of surroundings following an earthquake. Gas lines may have been damaged and may be leaking. If natural gas odors are present, follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures, evacuate the area and notify 9-1-1 immediately.
  • When evacuating, take emergency kits ONLY if safe to do so.
  • When moving through the building, move cautiously to avoid damaged stairways and doors, exposed electrical lines, potential/actual falling objects, and other hazards. Open doors carefully.
  • Never use an open flame for light following an earthquake. This includes the use of matches or lighters.
  • Shutdown systems which may be damaged from the surge of power if power has been lost or is unstable.
  • Do not touch any damaged or downed electrical power lines.
  • Look around the work area following an earthquake; return the work area to a normal condition by returning phones to their cradle, pushing in open drawers, etc.
  • If personnel in your building or Assembly area need assistance, notify your Warden or emergency personnel.
  • When safe, security should conduct a search of the building for anyone who might be trapped or otherwise need assistance.
  • If you are trapped in debris: move as little as possible so that you do not kick up dust; cover your nose and mouth with a handkerchief or clothing; tap on a pipe or wall so that rescuers can hear where you are; and use a whistle if one is available – shout only as a last resort.
  • BE PATIENT – if an earthquake has occurred, there will be a delayed response by emergency responders as they may be attending to more critical situations. Emergency response personnel will make every effort to respond to emergency situations as rapidly as possible and to keep personnel informed on the status of the emergency.

All employees should know of at least two (2) routes to exit the building in the event of an emergency evacuation. In addition, some departments may have specialized evacuation procedures for employees working in specialized areas, such as patient care clinics or laboratories. These specialized procedures, called “critical operation evacuation procedures“, provide unique guidance for employees during evacuations; these procedures are listed as an attachment to this plan.


  • If a condition is identified which requires evacuation, remain calm, immediately alert others in the area, sound an alarm (if not already present), and begin to exit; begin evacuation any time you:
    • Hear or see an alarm
    • See flames or smoke
    • Smell smoke or natural gas
    • Witness a sprinkler activation
    • Witness (see or hear) an explosion
  • Proceed to the nearest safe emergency exit. Call 9-1-1 from a safe location.
  • Provide help to those who need assistance; non-ambulatory people may require special attention.
  • Floor/Area Wardens will check areas to ensure that all personnel have been notified and have evacuated, and will report any persons remaining in the building to response personnel.
  • Exit the building and go to the identified Assembly Area listed in your building emergency evacuation plan, and STAY with your group – DO NOT leave the area unless instructed to do so by your Warden, supervisor or emergency response personnel.
  • Check in with your Floor/Area Warden.

Precautions and Guidance

  • Evacuations should always be performed in a calm manner; running, pushing, shouting, and other aggressive behavior should be avoided.
  • Personnel are responsible for the safe evacuation of students and visitors under their charge; common sense should dictate the level of effort required to accommodate an orderly evacuation of students and visitors.
  • Evacuation should be accomplished without stopping to retrieve emergency supply kits unless safe to do so; take only the necessary steps to:
    • Secure critical operations and hazardous materials.
    • De-energize or move equipment left in an unsafe position – this also applies to any conditions within the building such as cooking, stacking of materials, etc.
  • The Warden is responsible to account for personnel in their charge at the Assembly Area.
  • On stairs, ascend/descend in a single file line on the right-hand side of the stairwell, grasping the hand rail. Remove high-heeled shoes, if possible.
  • If injuries occur in the stairwell during evacuation and must be treated immediately, treat any injured on the nearest stairwell landing, not on the stairs, if possible; otherwise, assist the injured to the Assembly Area for treatment.
  • If a full campus evacuation is announced, follow instructions precisely to avoid gridlock.

Assisting People with Access and Functional Needs during an Evacuation

  • To alert visually impaired persons:
    • Announce the type of emergency. Offer your arm for guidance to lead them. Do not push or pull them. Tell the person where you are going. Alert them to obstacles you encounter. When you reach the Assembly Area, ask if further help is needed.
  • To alert people with hearing limitations:
    • Turn lights on/off to gain person’s attention. Indicate directions with gestures and/or write a note with evacuation directions.
  • To evacuate persons using crutches, canes or walkers:
    • Evacuate these individuals as injured persons. Assist and accompany them to the Assembly Area, if possible. If necessary and safe to do so, use a sturdy chair (or one with wheels) to move the person or help carry the individual to safety.
  • To evacuate wheelchair users:
    • Non-ambulatory persons’ needs and preferences vary; consult with the person to determine the best carry options. Individuals at ground floor locations may exit without help, while others have minimal ability to evacuate. Lifting may be dangerous. If necessary and safe to do so, use a sturdy chair (or one with wheels) to move the person or help carry the individual to safety.
    • Non-ambulatory wheelchair users may be put in rescue assistance areas or stairwells. Alert emergency responders of their location. The Fire Department will evacuate them.
    • Some non-ambulatory persons have respiratory complications. Remove them from smoke and vapors immediately.
    • Wheelchair users with electrical respirators get priority assistance.
    • Wheelchairs too heavy to take down stairs may be left behind. Reunite person with the chair as soon as it is safe to do so.

Whenever a fire alarm is activated on your floor, immediately evacuate the building by the nearest emergency exit.


Use the R-A-C-E method:

  • REMOVE/ALARM: If an alarm or other notification is heard, alert others in your area to evacuate using the nearest safe stairwell or exit – activate the nearest building alarm if not already present (use the manual pull station, or if not functioning, shout). Call 9-1-1 from a safe location.
  • CONTAIN: Confine the fire, if possible (i.e., close as many doors as possible as you leave the area, but DO NOT LOCK or prop doors open).
    • If the fire is small, attempt to put it out with a fire extinguisher ONLY if you have been trained and can do so safely.
    • Proceed to the nearest safe exit.
      NOTE: Never use the elevator!
  • If smoke is present, stay low.
    Check doors for heat before opening (use back of your hand, start at bottom of door); if the door is hot or if smoke is visible under the door, do not open and seek another exit path; if cool, exit carefully.
    NOTE: Heat and toxic products of combustion (smoke) are the primary dangers of a fire – Smoke and hot gases will accumulate near the ceiling.
  • If people refuse to evacuate, move on and report them to your Warden.
  • Exit the building and go to the identified Assembly Area listed on the posted building Emergency Evacuation Plan and STAY with your group – DO NOT leave the area unless instructed to do so by your Warden or emergency response personnel.
  • Check in with your Warden.

Precautions and Guidance

  • Actions taken on an employee’s part to use a fire extinguisher should be done so only after local notification has been given, evacuation has begun, and 9-1-1 has been notified. If you use a fire extinguisher, remember to always leave a “safe exit” – never exit through a fire. Never allow the fire to come between you and an exit path. Use the P-A-S-S method (pull-aim-squeeze-sweep) to extinguish small fires. If you are unable to put the fire out, evacuate by the nearest safe emergency exit.
  • If the fire involves electrical equipment that is active, attempt to unplug the device if safe to do so.
  • Be prepared to provide information to emergency response personnel as to the location of the fire and possible location of occupants.
  • If your clothes catch on fire, STOP where you are, DROP to the ground and ROLL over and over to smother the flames.
  • Evacuate down stairs, or as a last resort, if no other exit is available, evacuate to the roof. If you are trapped inside a room or area:
    • Confine the fire or smoke by closing as many doors as possible between you and the fire – stay or move to a safe location.
    • If smoke is present, stay low. Wedge a wet towel or cloth material along the bottom of the door to keep out smoke from entering the area.
    • If windows are operable and you must have air, open the window; break the window as a last resort, as it will become impossible to close it if necessary.
    • Leave a signal, such as a towel out the window, to get the Fire Department’s attention – if there is a phone dial 9-1-1.
  • High-rise buildings (greater than 75 feet): Certain buildings are not intended to have a total evacuation of building occupants upon alarm unless necessary. Horizontal or vertical partial building evacuations may be permitted:
    • Horizontal: Occupants move to a pre-designated area on the same floor away from the fire.
    • Vertical: Occupants on the fire floor and floor immediately above and below are evacuated.

If a Water Leak Occurs:

  • Notify Facilities Management Trouble Call Desk at (310) 825-9236 (on-campus) or your site Facilities Management (off-campus) to report the exact location of the leak and if any property is in imminent danger.
  • If safe to do so:
    • Turn off or disconnect electrical devices in the vicinity of the leak to reduce the risk of electrical shocks. If there are submerged electrical appliances or outlets in the vicinity of the leak, evacuate all personnel from the area.
    • Stop the source of the leak – do so cautiously.
    • Protect or remove valuable property that is susceptible to damage.
  • Alert occupants on floors beneath the water leak of the potential flooding of their areas.

If Flooding Occurs:

  • Call Facilities Management Trouble Call Desk at (310) 825-9236 (on-campus) or your site Facilities Management (off-campus) and provide the following information:
    • Building name, floor, corridor, room number, and/or area
    • Source (if known), and/or color, odor, and texture of the liquid
    • Nature and extent of flood
  • If safe to do so:
    • Turn off or disconnect electrical devices/appliances in the flood area to reduce risk of electrical shocks. If there are submerged electrical appliances or outlets in the water, evacuate all personnel from the area.
    • Stop the source of the flooding – do so cautiously.
    • Protect or remove valuable property that is susceptible to damage.
  • Close doors and seal openings to minimize the spread of water.
  • Remain in a safe adjacent area to direct response personnel to the site and keep others away from the area. Do not walk through standing water, especially if water has entered a parking garage or basement, or other areas where water may accumulate – it may contain hazardous materials.
  • If liquid is contaminated with a hazardous material, follow HAZARDOUS MATERIAL SPILL/RELEASEprocedures and secure the area.
  • Alert occupants on floors adjacent to and beneath the flood of the potential flooding of their areas.
  • Follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures as directed by emergency response personnel.
  • If driving, do not try to drive over a flooded road. If your car stalls, abandon it immediately. Attempting to move a stalled vehicle in flood conditions can be fatal.

Injuries may be defined as minor and serious. Minor injuries are those such as routine bumps, bruises, cuts, and scrapes that, if work related, are reportable to a supervisor and the Occupational Health Facility at (310) 825-6771. Minor injuries require only basic first aid to prevent further injuries or infections. Serious injuries are defined as illness or other medical emergencies that may be life-threatening and/or require immediate transport of a person to an emergency medical facility.


  • Survey the scene to determine if it is safe for you to help.
  • Confirm if airway is open and victim is breathing.
    NOTE: If the condition is life-threatening, provide immediate care ONLY if trained to do so – ALWAYS use appropriate barriers (e.g., gloves, pocket mask/shield).
  • For serious injuries, call or direct someone to call 9-1-1 immediately.
    NOTE: For minor injuries and non-emergency medical assistance:

    • Employees: Employees injured on the job will be referred by their supervisor to go to the Occupational Health Facility during work hours (Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.), or to the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center Emergency Room after hours, weekends, and holidays.
    • Students: Call the Arthur Ashe Student Health & Wellness Center at (310) 825-4073 (Monday – Friday, 1:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.), or the 24/7 Nurseline at (877) 351-3457 after hours, weekends, and holidays.
  • Stay with the victim until emergency response personnel arrive.
  • Direct someone to meet the responding emergency personnel and assist them by leading them to the victim – hold an elevator in the Lobby for use by emergency response personnel, if applicable.
  • Be prepared to provide information regarding the situation to emergency responders upon arrival.
  • Notify the employee’s supervisor as soon as possible.

Precautions and Guidance

  • Never give anything to eat or drink to personnel who are injured or ill.
  • Make the victim as comfortable as possible – NEVER move anyone seriously injured or who is suspected of having a head, neck or back injury UNLESS he/she is in immediate danger.
  • Take the necessary steps to protect yourself and the victim against the transmission of communicable diseases.
  • If a situation occurs that necessitates an evacuation to save a life, immediately remove the injured victim regardless of his/her injury.

Some rooms are equipped with red light switches. These are emergency lights that will not go off in the event of a power outage. Always keep the red switches in the on position.


  • Remain calm – use emergency lighting.
  • Report power outages to Facilities Management Trouble Call Desk at (310) 825-9236 (on-campus) or your site Facilities Management (off-campus).
  • Turn off all light switches, except one (so you know when power is restored).
  • Turn off and unplug computers and other equipment sensitive to power spikes and surges.
  • Turn off coffee pots and other sources which produce heat.
  • Stay near your area and await further instructions from your Warden; do not leave the campus unless instructed to do so by your supervisor. Evacuation is unlikely.

Precautions and Guidance

  • Keep a flashlight in your desk; never use a candle or an open flame to produce light.
  • If you are in an area with no lights, proceed cautiously to an area that has emergency lights. If no emergency lighting is available, evacuate to an Assembly Area.
  • Provide assistance to students, visitors and other staff members in your area.
  • Use flashlights to search for employees, students, visitors or others caught in unlit areas and escort them to an exit.
  • If you are in an elevator, remain calm and press the emergency call button or phone.
  • Stand-by for instructions from emergency personnel to evacuate the building in the event that the power cannot be restored in a timely manner. While most power outages are resolved quickly, if the power outage is expected to be of a long duration, cancellation of the day’s activities may be necessary.
  • Do not plug additional equipment into the red outlets – they have been designated for existing loads. Additional loads may cause further problems.
  • Do not open the doors of refrigerators and freezers unless absolutely necessary so that they will maintain their temperature for longer periods. Follow food safety guidelines when your refrigerator’s power is off.
  • Do not use a gas stove for heating or operate generators indoors; both could cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • If a traffic signal is not working, treat it as a stop sign.

In emergency situations you may be directed to: (1) evacuate; (2) shelter-in-place in your office/current location; or (3) shelter-in-place in a pre-designated location.

Sheltering-in-place is used for hazardous materials incidents, sustained police action, active shooter events, or other situations where it is safer to remain indoors than to go outside. Sheltering-in-place actions means you should remain indoors until authorities tell you it is safe or you are told to evacuate.

Actions (Pre-designated shelter-in-place locations)

  • Close and lock your office windows.
  • Close your office door.
  • Go to your pre-designated “shelter-in-place area” as directed.
  • Wait for further instructions or an “all-clear” message. Follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures if instructed to do so.
    NOTE: For certain situations, such as hazardous chemical spills, occupants may be notified to shelter-in-place in their pre-designated shelter-in-place location and “seal the room”. Three minutes after a shelter-in-place notification, all exterior doors will be locked, and will remain locked until an “all clear” announcement is made. Wardens will direct pre-designated trained personnel to lock windows/doors, seal windows/vents/doors, and turn off air conditioning/fans.

Actions (Offices, other locations)

  • Select a small, interior room, with no or few windows and a hard-wired telephone, if possible.
  • Close and lock all windows and exterior doors.
  • Turn off all fans, heating and air conditioning systems.
  • If instructed, use duct tape and plastic sheeting (heavier than food wrap) to seal all cracks around the door and any vents into the room.
  • If you are in your car, close windows and turn off vents and air conditioning.
  • Review your Employee Emergency Action Plan, inspect your workplace emergency kits, and listen to the radio (UCLA 1630 AM/other) or television for further instructions or an “all-clear” message.


  • Do not touch, move or cover the object.
  • Alert others in the area and evacuate the immediate area.
  • Report the incident to 9-1-1.
  • Get a good description (i.e., size, color, markings, noises made, e.g., ticking); provide exact location (i.e., floor, room number, location in room).
  • Do not use a radio, cell phone or battery operated bullhorn in the area (this may detonate the device).
  • Evacuate the floor or entire building only if instructed to do so by emergency response personnel and follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures.
  • If directions are not given to evacuate the building, control entry to the area until relieved of responsibility or given further instructions from emergency response personnel.


  • If you witness a workplace violence incident or if you encounter a person behaving in a manner that causes you to fear for your own or another’s safety, you should immediately call 9-1-1, or have someone call for you. This includes:
    • Crimes in progress, violent incidents or specific threats of imminent violence
    • Suspicious activity
    • If an individual:
      • Makes threats of physical harm toward you, others, or him/herself
      • Has a weapon
  • Use a phone out of sight/hearing of the individual; law enforcement officers will respond and take appropriate action.
  • Do not attempt to intervene physically or deal with the situation yourself; law enforcement officers will take charge of any incident that can or does involve physical harm. Do not confront the suspect or block their exit. Do not take unnecessary chances.
  • If it is an ongoing situation (e.g., hostage, person with a weapon), employees should immediately evacuate the area of the incident; supervisors are responsible for accounting for their employees. Evacuate the building if instructed to do so by emergency response personnel and follow EMERGENCY EVACUATION procedures.
  • The area of the incident should be secured and left undisturbed; employees who witnessed the incident should be available to be interviewed by law enforcement officers.

Workplace Violence: Active Shooter

  • The Department of Homeland Security recommends the following guidelines: evacuate, hide out or take action against the active shooter (RUN, HIDE, FIGHT):
    Whenever possible RUN. Get away from the gunshots first then call 9-1-1 if no one else has called to report what is happening. DO NOT LINGER IN THE AREA; DO NOT GO TO THE ASSEMBLY AREA.
    If unable to evacuate and get out of the area then HIDE. Lock or barricade yourself to shelter-in-place in your current location, if possible, to prevent entry from the shooter. Silence your cell phone then call 9-1-1.
    If you cannot barricade yourself inside and the suspect comes in then work as a team with others, and make a plan to FIGHT the shooter(s). Do whatever you can to prevent the shooter from achieving the goal of shooting people.

Precautions and Guidance

  • If you are in a classroom, room or office:
    • STAY THERE, secure the door and turn off the lights. Remain silent. If sheltering in place, silence your cell phone. Call 911 if possible.
    • If the door has no lock and the door opens in, a heavy door wedge can be kept on hand and used, otherwise look for heavy furniture to barricade the door. If the door has a window, cover it.
    • Depending on the gunman’s location, you may also exit through the windows. Have someone watch as you get as many students out through windows as calmly and as quietly as possible.
    • If the windows do not open, or you cannot break them, or you are not on a ground floor, get out of sight from the door and stay low and quiet.
    • If no police units are on scene, move well away from the incident and find safe cover positions (not the parking lots) and wait for the police to arrive.
    • When police officers arrive, while keeping your hands up and palms spread, do exactly what the police tell you to do.
  • If you are in a hallway or corridor:
    • Get in a room that is not already secured and secure it.
    • Unless you are very close to an exit, do not run through a long hall to get to one, as you may encounter the gunman or hostage taker.
  • If you are in a large room, gym, theater, or auditorium:
    • If the gunman is not present, move to and out the external exits and move toward any police unit. Drop all bags and keep your hands up and palms spread. Do what the police tell you to do.
  • If you are outdoors or in an open space:
    • Stay alert and look for appropriate cover locations. Hard cover, such as brick walls, large trees, retaining walls, parked vehicles, and any other object that may stop bullets, may be utilized as cover.
  • If you are trapped with the gunman:
    • Do not do anything to provoke him/her. If he/she is not shooting, do what he/she says and do not move suddenly.
    • If possible call 9-1-1 and talk with a police dispatcher. If you cannot speak, leave the phone line open so the police can hear what is going on.
    • If he/she is shooting, you need to make a choice: stay still and play dead, run for an exit while zigzagging, or attack the shooter.
  • What to expect from police:
    • Regardless of how officers appear, remain calm. Do as the officers tell you, and do not be afraid of them. Put down any bags or packages that you are carrying and keep your hands visible at all times.
    • If you know where the shooter is, or know the shooter’s description, tell the officers.
    • The first officers to arrive will not stop to aid injured victims. Rescue teams will follow shortly after the first responding officers enter the area. They will attend to the injured and remove everyone safely from the area.