Emergency Procedures




Active shooter is a person who is using a firearm or other weapon with the intent to injure or kill others. Law enforcement personnel will deploy to the location of the active shooter with the primary goal of stopping the shooter.

An active shooter incident can occur under a variety of circumstances, so no one set of guidelines is able to cover specific actions to take in every situation. Even so, familiarity with the following information can help with planning your own survival strategy in a variety of incidents. When an active shooter situation arises remember the acronym A.D.D. to assist in planning your response strategy:

A - Avoid the confrontation
D - Deny access to your location
D - Defend yourself


AVOID the Confrontation, if an active shooter event occurs outside or inside your building:

  • Call 911 as soon as possible.
  • AVOID any area you see signs an active shooter event is taking place.
  • If it is safe to do so, employees, faculty, and students should exit the building immediately to AVOID the shooter.
  • How exit a building safely:
    • Have a route planned before attempting to leave.
    • Do not attempt to carry anything with you while fleeing.
    • Move quickly and keep your hands and palms visible and upraised, as you exit the building.
    • Do not attempt to treat or remove injured people, but note their locations so that you may provide the information to emergency responders.
    • Proceed to a safe location.
    • Remain at the designated assembly area until you are released.
    • ALWAYS comply with commands from law enforcement officers.

DENY access to your location if unable to AVOID the confrontation.

  • If a shooter is inside your building proceed to a room that can be locked. On your way to the room tell as many people as possible to do the same.
  • Lock all doors and windows and turn off the lights in the building or classroom.
  • Place cell phone on vibrate if possible. Phones that omit sound will attract attention to your location.
  • Stack desks, chairs, or heavy objects against doors or windows to DENY access. Stay away from windows and out of sight of the shooter if possible.
  • Have one person call 911 and be prepared to provide the following:
    • Your location
    • Your name
    • The number of people in the room with you.
    • Any and all information about the shooters location and actions.

DEFEND yourself if an active shooter enters your room.

  • DEFEND yourself as a LAST resort. If you are forced to protect yourself or the lives of others the following will assist in planning your survival strategy:
    • Swarm the shooter using a pack mentality.
    • Use improvised weapons e.g. chairs, fire extinguishers, or other available objects.
    • Grab any weapons the shooter has and point it away from people to protect them.


What to expect from responding officers:

Police officers are responding to an active shooter may be wearing regular uniforms, plainclothes, or special tactical gear. They will be clearly defined as law enforcement officers. The following may happen during an active shooter event.

  • Responding officers will point firearms at you while seeking the threat. This is a normal part of their training and response. Avoid any sudden furtive movements and obey all officer commands. Keep your hands visible to officers at all times.
  • Responding officers are trained to proceed immediately to the area where shooting is taking place to neutralize the threat. If you are injured, they will not stop to assist you.
  • Another group of officers and/or tactical medics will follow to provide medical assistance and help with evacuation.
  • Remain calm and immediately comply with all commands from law enforcement officers.

Follow these instructions in the event you receive a telephone bomb threat:

  • Listen to the caller carefully and write down what you are told. Always remember to ask the caller when and where the device is supposed to activate. Try to fill out as much of the information on paper, but don't be surprised if the caller simply hangs up before you can react.
  • Do not panic. The vast majority of phone in bomb threats are pranks.
  • Call 911 or Public Safety immediately at (479)968-0222 and report what the caller said. Stay on the telephone with the police dispatcher or an officer over the phone depending on the circumstance.
  • Do not activate a fire alarm unless told to do so by an officer or the dispatcher. Public safety follows procedures regarding bomb threat response and evacuations. Building evacuations will be conducted only if ordered by the person in charge of the incident.
  • If you are told to evacuate, close your room door but do not lock it. Take all your personal belongings, lunches, purses, backpacks (as they could be mistaken for concealed explosives) and exit building. Move well away from the building (500 feet is recommended) for you safety. Stay away from windows.

Bomb Threat Checklist


Remember to stay calm and not hang up.

1. Keep the caller talking if possible.

2. Questions to ask:

  • When will it go off?
  • Hour:
  • Time Remaining:
  • What Does it look like?
  • Where is it Located?
  • Building:
  • Area:
  • What kind of bomb is it?
  • Where are you now?
  • What is your name and address?

3. Write out the message in its entirety along with any other comments.

A Chemical or Hazardous material is defined as any substance or material could adversely affect the safety of the public, handlers or carriers during transportation. It may be explosive, gaseous, flammable, toxic, radioactive, corrosive, combustive or leachable.

  • Keep people away from the spill.
  • If you know what the substance is, consult the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for hazards and clean-up instructions. If the release is small enough and can be cleaned up easily and isolated safely, handle it as a part of your normal job duties.
  • If the MSDS is not available or the substance is unknown and the severity of the hazard cannot be determined, please contact:
    • Your immediate supervisor (if unable to reach supervisor)
    • Department of Public Safety at (479)968-0222
    • If you determine an imminent hazard (i.e. serious fire or major injury) exists contact the Department of Public Safety at (479)968-0222 and evacuate the area. Next, notify your supervisor.

Do not call 911 unless an immediate medical emergency exists.

Note: Whenever handling chemicals or hazardous waste, employees have the right and are required to have the appropriate MSDS available for immediate consultation. Also, it is good practice to consult the MSDS prior to handling any chemical or hazardous waste.

If you are a victim or a witness of a verbally abusive individual or disruptive event:

  • Call 911, either personally or have someone else call.
  • Identify your name, location, and need for assistance. Stay on the phone with the dispatcher and follow any directions given.
  • Stay calm and supportive of others who may be experiencing the verbal abuse.
  • If you can, remove yourself or the targeted person(s) to a room and lock the door.
  • Attempt to diffuse the situation. Acknowledge anger, but calmly ask the person to leave.
  • If the person(s) refuse to leave inform them the police have been called and they must leave immediately.
  • If the person(s) leave be prepared to provide a detailed description to responding law enforcement officers. (i.e. clothing description, height, weight, build, etc.)
  • Never endanger yourself needlessly or continue to argue with an abusive person.

If you feel a violent shaking of the ground indicative of a possible earthquake follow these instructions:

Drop, Cover, Hold

  • DROP to the ground.
  • Take COVER by getting under a sturdy desk/table or crouching down close to a wall. Remember to cover your head and stay clear of falling objects.
  • HOLD on until the shaking stops. (2 to 5 minutes)
  • If outside stay clear of falling objects.
  • If indoors, stay there. Get under a desk or table and hold on, or stand in a corner. Do not go in a doorway. Protect your head, neck, and face.
  • If driving, pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses and power lines. Stay in the vehicle until the shaking stops.
  • Do not attempt to use elevators.
  • If in a crowded place, do not rush for the doors. Move away from windows and shelves containing objects that could fall.
  • After the shaking subsides, turn off computers: unplug electrical equipment: replace telephone handsets: go outdoors and stay clear of buildings, walls, power lines and trees.
  • Call 911 if you or others are injured. Provide the following information:
    • Your name
    • Building name (location)
    • Type of injury or damage
    • Location of injured person or building damage
    • Room number you are calling from


If you see fire or smoke in your immediate area Use the RACE acronym as a guide:

R= Remove anyone in immediate danger. Help those needing assistance evacuate the building completely. If unable to fully evacuate those requiring assistance, move them to nearest stairwell and notify emergency responders.

A= Activate the fire alarm. Pull the nearest fire alarm station. Call the Police at 911 or campus police at (479)968-0222 to report the location of the fire/smoke and any other pertinent information. If the call cannot be made safely from the building, call as soon as you find a safe place.

C= Confine and contain. Close all doors as you leave the building. Do not lock the doors.

E= Extinguish. Only if you know the location of a nearby extinguisher and can do so without endangering your safety.

If you hear a fire alarm:

  • You must evacuate the building. Ensure that all present in your area also evacuate.
  • Shut off your room lights and close the door. Do not lock the door.
  • Take your backpack, briefcase, purse and coat with you. Do not retrieve these items, if doing so would delay your evacuation.
  • Evacuate the building via nearest fire exit and remain well away from the building (at least 500 feet), until informed by an officer that you may re-enter the building.
  • Do not approach people who have been injured by electrocution or toxic exposure, unless they are clearly away from the hazard.
  • Do not move a seriously injured person, unless they are in an unsafe area. If the victim must be moved, move as a unit, always supporting the head and neck.
  • Do not bend or twist the injured persons body.
  • Call 911 and report the following information:
    • Location of the emergency.
    • What happened?
    • Number of people injured.
    • Is the injured person conscious?
    • Is the injured person breathing?
    • Is there severe bleeding?
  • After calling 911, stay with the victim until help arrives.
  • Restore or maintain breathing and heartbeat.
  • Stop severe bleeding with direct pressure when possible.
  • Keep victim warm.
  • Follow the instructions of the 911 dispatcher.

In the event of overtly threatening behavior constituting an immediate threat to self or others, notify call 911 or Public Safety at (479) 968-0222.

In non-emergency situations, refer students to the University Counseling Center at (479) 968-0329.

Don't worry alone. If you are concerned about a student and are unsure what to do, consult with the Counseling Center at (479) 968-0329 or contact Public Safety at (479) 968-0222.

Express your concerns directly to the individual.

Make referral in the presence of the individual and offer to accompany them.

Watch for changes in behavior:

  • Verbal expression of suicidal or violent thoughts;
  • Excessively morbid, violent or depressing themes in written assignments;
  • Impaired speech or garbled/disjointed thoughts;
  • High levels of irritability;
  • Excessive drinking or drug use;
  • Severe loss of emotional control;
  • Changes in hygiene, speech, attentiveness or social interaction;
  • Significant changes in academic or work performance.
  • Watches
    • When conditions are right, a severe weather watch may be issued. Continue with normal activities, but monitor the situation.
  • Warnings
    • When severe weather is imminent, a warning will sound. If severe weather approaches, be prepared to move to shelter.
    • Remain indoors and away from all windows until the severe storm passes. If large hail begins to fall and you are outside, seek shelter immediately.
    • Report any injuries or damage by calling 911.
    • Be prepared to give the following information.
      • Your name
      • Building name (location)
      • Type of injury or damage
      • Location of injured person or building damage
      • Room number you are calling from

Tornado Watch:

  • The National Weather Service issues a tornado watch when conditions are favorable for the information of a tornado. A watch does not mean that a tornado has been sighted. However, you should be aware of changing weather conditions.

Tornado Warning:

  • A tornado warning is issued when a tornado has been spotted and people in its path are in danger. ATU will implement its emergency response plan and alerts will be sent out via ATU campus emergency and outreach notification system with instructions to staff and students.
  • When a tornado warning is issued:
    • The emergency warning sirens will sound.
    • Stay away from outside walls, windows, mirrors, and glass.
    • Everyone should move from offices and classrooms to designated shelter in place locations. If time permits, attempt to move to the lowest possible level of the building.
    • Do not use elevators.
    • Sit on the floor with your back to the interior wall and cover the back of your head with arms.
    • Remain in the building unless told to evacuate by emergency personnel.

When to call 911:

Call 911 in all emergencies.

What is an emergency?

An emergency is any immediate threat to life and/or property that requires immediate response from police, fire or Emergency Medical Services. Some examples of emergencies are crimes in progress, any kind of fire or a serious injury or illness. If you are not sure if an incident falls into an emergency classification, feel free to call 911 when an immediate response is needed. The Department of Public Safety can be reached at (479)968-0222.

How should I report an emergency?

  • Call 911

  • Stay on the line with the dispatcher.

  • Provide the address, location and a description of the emergency.

  • Provide the phone number at your location.

  • Provide a thorough description of the incident to assure appropriate resources are dispatched.

Non-Emergency Telephone Numbers

The following telephone numbers are provided for non-emergency situations. Using these numbers will provide a prompt response from the responsible agency, while keeping 911 lines free for emergencies. All 911 calls are voice and TTY.

Public Safety

Public Safety non-emergency


(479) 968-0222

Physical Plant


(479) 968-0261


In the event of early morning inclement weather conditions, Arkansas Tech University's Presidents Office will determine whether this inclement weather policy will be placed into effect and will announce its implementation before 6:30 a.m. if at all possible. On days covered by the inclement weather policy, all employees should arrive at work by 10:00 a.m. to receive credit for a full days work. Employees arriving after 10:00 a.m. must use annual leave for the amount of time involved in the tardiness, and employees not coming to work at all must use a full days annual leave.

During the inclement weather policy, all classes will be canceled.

Notification Examples

Campus Closed All classes are canceled and all offices are closed.

Night Classes Canceled All classes beginning after 5:00 pm are cancelled.