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Emergency Management

Emergency Procedures

The most important emergency procedure is preparation. The more prepared you are, the better you can act to minimize panic and danger for yourself and others.

Get to know the location of emergency exits in buildings where you spend time. Review the emergency procedures outlined here, and familiarize yourself with the best response in any emergency.

In the event of an emergency:

  1. Keep calm.
  2. Alert those around you.
  3. If you have received instructions from first responders or volunteer emergency wardens, via Camosun College email or from the Camosun College website, follow those instructions.
  4. If you require urgent assistance, call 250-370-3075.
  5. If internet access is available, updates and information will be available on the Camosun College home page.
  6. If internet access is disrupted, information will be relayed according to whatever means are available and best suit the situation.
  7. Above all, keep calm, think before you act, and act swiftly to minimize your exposure to danger.

Download a copy of the emergency procedures poster (prints 8.5" x 14")

Emergency? Dial

250–370–3075

for help in any emergency or

3075

from any campus phone.

Active Shooter Threat

Camosun’s Campus Security department works diligently to ensure the safety and security of all members of our college community. We encourage all students, employees and guests, however, to take responsibility and to make themselves aware of the security services we provide and to contact a member of our security team should you have any concerns on campus.

We know that we live in an unpredictable world and the best we can do is to be as prepared as possible. In case of an emergency situation, we have posted a video (below) that will help you should a hostile person enter or threaten our campuses. While every incident is different and could require a unique response from Camosun College and the appropriate authorities, we hope that by being better prepared, we can all help each other during times of crisis.

This video is designed to create awareness and prompt you to consider your options if you are ever faced with the unthinkable: an active shooter on campus.

Warning This video simulates the situations you might experience during an active shooter event on campus. Some might find the video disturbing. It may be helpful to watch the video with classmates, friends or instructors, so that you can discuss afterwards. Camosun College provides personal counselling services if you wish to speak with someone in person.


Earthquake

If you are inside

Drop
Drop down onto your hands and knees (before the earthquake knocks you down). This position protects you from falling but allows you to still move if necessary.
Cover
Cover your head and neck (and your entire body if possible) under a sturdy table or desk. If there is no shelter nearby, only then should you get down near an interior wall (or next to low-lying furniture that won't fall on you), and cover your head and neck with your arms and hands.
Hold on
Hold on to your shelter (or to your head and neck) until the shaking stops. Be prepared to move with your shelter if the shaking shifts it around.
  • Stay away from windows, shelves with heavy objects or hazardous materials.
  • Do not pull the fire alarm unless there is a fire.
  • Do not try to move when the ground is shaking.
  • Wait 60 seconds after the shaking stops before moving from your position.
  • Be prepared for aftershocks. You may need to take cover again.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Check carefully for falling debris before evacuating.
  • When it is safe, go the Emergency Assembly Point.
  • Do not re-enter buildings until the all clear has been given by emergency personnel.
  • Do not leave campus until you have checked in with an emergency warden or instructor to let them know you are safe. If you don’t check in, they may think you are injured somewhere and responders will be looking for you.

If you are outside

  • Stay outside.
  • Stay in an open area away from trees and power lines.
  • Do not re-enter buildings.
  • When shaking has stopped, go to an Emergency Assembly Point if safe to do so.

Evacuation

Situations which require you to evacuate a building include fire, earthquake, or hazardous material release inside the building.

When to evacuate

Evacuate when you hear alarm bells, when danger is imminent, or when instructed to do so by first responders or emergency wardens.

  • Secure hazardous materials and equipment before leaving if safe to do so.
  • Assist people with disabilities.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • In case of fire, check doors for heat before opening and stay low if moving through smoke.
  • Leave the building by the nearest exit.
  • Check for falling debris before exiting the building, and move away from doors once outside.
  • Go to the Emergency Assembly Point for your building.
  • Never re-enter the building until notified by emergency personnel that it is safe to do so.

Evacuation of people with disabilities

If you have a disability, it is important to anticipate and plan how you would evacuate in case of emergency. Review the exits and areas of refuge in advance.

If you are assisting a person with a disability, always ask how you can help before attempting to assist. Ask whether there are any special considerations or items that need to accompany the person.

People with visual impairments

  • Tell the person the nature of the emergency and offer to guide him/her.
  • Ask if he/she would like to hold onto your arm as you exit, especially if there is debris or a crowd.
  • As you walk, tell the person where you are and advise of any obstacles.
  • When you have reached safety, orient the person to where he/she is.
  • Ask if any further assistance is needed. Do not leave the person until further assistance arrives.

People with hearing impairments

  • Remember that people with impaired hearing may not perceive emergency alarms and an alternative warning technique is required.
  • Either – write a note explaining about the emergency and the nearest evacuation route (e.g. “Fire – go out the rear door to the right and down the stairs, now!”)
  • Or – turn the light switch on and off to gain attention, then indicate (through gestures or in writing) what is happening or what to do.

People with mobility impairments

  • Accompany wheelchair users and those unable to descend the stairs to the refuge area. Direct them to wait there until they are assisted down the stairs by fire personnel. Do not use use elevators to evacuate people with disabilities.
  • A staff member or student must be designated to inform emergency services, campus security, or emergency warden that someone is in the refuge area and provide their specific location.
  • If the person cannot be taken to an area of refuge, help them get to a room with a door that closes, away from the fire or smoke and is as close as possible to an exit.
  • If people are in immediate danger and cannot be moved to a safer area to wait for assistance, it may be necessary to evacuate using a safe carry technique.

Fire

Everyone must evacuate immediately when a fire alarm is activated, even if there are no apparent signs of an emergency. Follow evacuation procedures and take instruction from the Camosun College emergency wardens and first responders. Do not re-enter buildings until the all clear has been given.

If you see or suspect a fire, and the alarm has not yet been sounded:

Remove
Remove anyone in immediate danger. Help people with mobility disabilities relocate to areas of refuge and report their location to the emergency warden.
Activate
Activate the nearest fire alarm and call 250-370-3075 from a mobile phone or 3075 from any college phone. Provide your exact location and the type of fire.
Contain
Contain the smoke and fire by closing doors. Turn off machinery if it is safe to do so.
Extinguish
Extinguish a small fire only if you feel safe and you have been trained to do so. Do not put yourself at risk.

If you hear fire alarm bells, follow evacuation procedures:

  • Secure hazardous materials and equipment before leaving if safe to do so.
  • Assist people with disabilities.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Check doors for heat before opening and stay low if moving through smoke.
  • Leave the building by the nearest exit.
  • Check for falling debris before exiting the building, and move away from doors once outside.
  • Go to your Emergency Assembly Point.
  • Never re-enter the building until notified by emergency personnel that it is safe to do so.

Medical Emergency

  • Call 250-370-3075.
  • State your location: campus, building and room number, provide your phone number, and stay on the line.
  • Give a detailed description of the medical emergency:
    • Is patient conscious?
    • Is patient breathing?
    • Is patient bleeding?
  • Do not leave the person unattended.
  • Do not move the person except in life-threatening situations.
  • Send someone outside to meet first responders and to direct them to the person needing help.

Severe Weather

During severe weather conditions, Camosun College may make the decision to close Lansdowne and Interurban campuses and cancel or reschedule classes based on transportation and safety issues.

If this occurs, Camosun will communicate the closing of campuses and cancellation of classes through:

  • The media - local radio & TV stations
  • Postings on the main Camosun social media sites
  • Postings on the Camosun website homepage: camosun.ca
  • Messages on the main Camosun phone number: 250-370-3000
  • Notices on the Camosun College Emergency App (download Camosun's free app here)
  • BC Transit

Once the college has been declared CLOSED, it will be closed for the remainder of the school day, including evening classes, and employees and students are asked to check the above communication outlets for further updates.

Camosun College decisions on campus closures and procedures

Deciding to close the college for weather purposes is not a simple task—it is partly a guessing game and partly an exercise in keeping people safe. There are many factors are that influence the decision.

First and foremost, we want people to stay safe. So we look at a series of factors that include: are the buses running? Are main roads clear? Is the campus clear and safe? What are the conditions of the roads? Do we have power and heat? What are police forces saying and recommending? What's the ongoing weather prediction? To minimize confusion we work very hard to have these decisions made by 6:30am. 

We also have a responsibility to make sure that, as much as possible, there is minimal disruption to courses and programs. If a day gets lost, that means that students miss that content. Some instructors can make that up, but others have very prescribed programs and so students will miss things. We want to avoid setting you back in your course and program. This is why some institutes in the province never close, no matter what. Other factors impact closures; for example, for schools it is often whether the school bus system can run.

We know that not everyone lives where the roads are clear and that buses run slow in inclement weather. Our best advice is to look after yourself and be safe. You have to be the judge of that, as every circumstance is different. If you can't make it in, we suggest that you let your instructors know. And we understand.

Shelter in Place

Some emergencies may require you to wait inside the building, or to “shelter in place” before you evacuate the building. These emergencies include the release of chemical, biological or radiological materials or the presence of an active shooter on campus. Under such conditions, it may be safer for you to remain indoors rather than to exit into a potentially harmful environment.

The type of hazard determines which of the steps you will need to take.

Active shooter

Shelter in place if you are unable to safely evacuate.

  • If you are in a classroom, room or office, stay there, secure the doors and windows and wait for further instructions or an escort from emergency personnel.
  • If the door does not lock, consider barricading the door with tables and chairs.
  • If you are in a corridor, go into the nearest office not already secured and lock or barricade the door and windows.
  • Close curtains or blinds where possible.
  • Stay away from windows and doors.
  • Stay low and quiet.
  • Set cell phones to silent mode with vibrate turned off. Do not make non-essential calls.

Actions to avoid

  • Do not open the door once it has been secured and until you are officially advised “all clear” or are certain it is emergency personnel at the door.
  • Do not use or hide in washrooms.
  • Do not travel down long corridors.
  • Do not assemble in large open areas (e.g. cafeterias).
  • Do not call 911 unless you have immediate concern for your safety, the safety of others, or feel you have critical information that will assist emergency personnel in the response.
  • Follow instructions from emergency personnel only.
  • For their own safety, emergency personnel must initially consider all individuals as potential threats. It is important to follow instructions from police at all times to avoid harm and ensure the best possible response.

Following the incident

  • Cooperate with emergency personnel to assist in an orderly evacuation.
  • Proceed to the Emergency Assembly Point.
  • The police may require individuals to remain available for questioning after the incident.

Hazardous Materials Release

If you are instructed to shelter in place due to a hazardous materials release outside the building:

  • Take direction from emergency wardens or first responders.
  • Go indoors and stay there until directed differently.
  • Select a room without windows if you can.
  • Close all windows and doors.
  • Close vents if you can.
  • Turn off anything that moves air.

Utility Failure

Building flood

  • Do not walk through flood water – it may be electrically charged.
  • If possible, shut off power to the affected areas.
  • Move hazardous chemicals and vulnerable equipment away.
  • Call 250-370-3075.

Hazardous spill

  • Do not attempt to clean up the spill unless you have received training in chemical spill procedures.
  • Secure the area and warn others.
  • If toxic materials have spread, evacuate the building.
  • Call 250-370-3075.

If the release of a hazardous chemical or gas is affecting people in your area, immediately:

Evacuate
Prevent others from entering the area. If anyone is contaminated, set up an isolation area. If available and only if it is safe to do so, put on personal protective equipment, observe and support affected people until emergency services arrive. Do not put yourself at risk.
Isolate
Isolate the hazardous material by clearing the area, close the doors. If safe to do so, turn off isolator switches, ventilation and machinery. Do not touch suspect material.
Activate
Shout a warning and pass the alarm by word of mouth. When you are safe and away from the spill or gas, call 250-370-3075 and give the exact location and type of material involved.
Contain
  • Don’t risk contact with material or allow spread.
  • Do not smell, touch or taste.
  • Close doors between you and the hazardous material.

Information about the management of minor chemical/hazardous material spills or releases can be found on Material Data Safety sheets contained in the department.

Power outage

  • Back-up generators will provide emergency lighting in most areas.
  • Turn off and unplug computers and other sensitive equipment.
  • If safety is a concern, evacuate the building and go to the Emergency Assembly Point for your building.
  • Remain calm and provide assistance to others if necessary.
  • Ensure someone remains with people with a disability who are waiting for assistance in areas of refuge.
  • Call 250-370-3075.

Gas leak

A gas leak refers to a leak of natural gas from a pipe or other means of containment into an enclosed area such as a classroom, furnace room or other indoor area or an outdoor leak into the atmosphere from a leaking pipe, meter, or valve. Natural gas is by nature colourless and odourless, but mercaptans are added to the gas to assist in identifying leaks. Mercaptans give natural gas an odour similar to rotten eggs.

Common signs of a natural gas leak:

Indoors

  • A gas odour
  • A blowing or hissing sound
  • Dirt being blown or thrown into the air

If you suspect a leak indoors:

  • Shut off all sources of ignition such as motors and heaters.
  • Do not use switches to turn on or off any electrical devices as they may cause sparks.
  • Do not use the fire alarm as it may cause electrical arcs.
  • Prevent the fumes from travelling to other parts of the building by closing the doors to the room and opening windows if it is safe to do so.
  • Go to an area not affected by the gas, and call 250-370-3075.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Once outside move away from the building at least 200 feet, keeping driveways and sidewalks clear for emergency responders.
  • Do not return to the evacuated building until authorized by emergency personnel.

Outdoors

  • A gas odour
  • A blowing or hissing sound
  • Dirt being blown or thrown into the air
  • Water being blown or thrown into the air
  • Fire coming from the ground
  • Brown patches in vegetation
  • A dry spot in a moist lawn or field

If you suspect a leak outdoors:

  • Shut off all sources of ignition such as motors and heaters.
  • Do not use switches to turn on or off any electrical devices as they may cause sparks.
  • Do not use the fire alarm as it may cause electrical arcs.
  • If it is close to a building, emergency wardens will advise occupants to evacuate the building.
  • Try to prevent the fumes from travelling into any buildings by closing the doors and windows.
  • Go to an area not affected by the gas, and call 250-370-3075.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Once outside, move away from the building at least 200 feet, keeping driveways and sidewalks clear for emergency responders.
  • Do not return to the evacuated building until authorized by emergency personnel.
Contact Us
Camosun College Lansdowne
3100 Foul Bay Rd
Victoria BC V8P 5J2
Camosun College Interurban
4461 Interurban Rd
Victoria BC V9E 2C1
  • 250–370–3000
  • 1–877–554–7555 (toll-free)

©1996–2017 Camosun College | Victoria BC, Canada | Printed: August 21, 2017 at 3:19 am Change Everything logo for print