Emergency & Crisis Procedures

The Office of Safety and Security works to provide a safe and secure campus environment by protecting and providing assistance for students, faculty, staff, and visitors. We will be service-oriented, person-centered and distinctively Christian in all that we do. Georgia Christian University campus security is maintained 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year by the Georgia Christian University Office of Safety and Security. GCU Security also provides on campus escorts to and from buildings and vehicles. Uniquely suited to problem-solving and serving the University’s faculty, staff, and students, Georgia Christian University Safety and Security Officers stand ready to serve when called upon night or day.

IN CASE OF BOMB THREAT

In the event of a bomb threat:

  • DO NOT HANDLE ANY SUSPICIOUS OBJECT OR PACKAGE!
  • Clear the area and immediately call GCU Security at 770-279-0507. GCU Security will make the appropriate notifications.
  • To emphasize the importance of following proper procedures during times of emergency and/or crisis

 

Any person receiving a bomb threat by phone should ask:

  • When is the bomb going to explode?
  • Where is the bomb located?
  • What kind of bomb is it?
  • What does it look like?

 

If possible keep talking to the caller and record the following:

  • Time of call.
  • Age and gender of caller.
  • Speech pattern, accent, possible nationality, etc.
  • Emotional state of the caller.

 

IMMEDIATELY notify GCU Security at 770-279-0507 and report the incident:

  • GCU Security will determine if the building will need to be evacuated.
  • GCU Security will conduct a detailed search. Employees are requested to make a cursory inspection of their area for suspicious objects or packages and report the location to GCU Security. DO NOT TOUCH THE SUSPICIOUS OBJECT OR PACKAGE. Do not open drawers or cabinets, turn lights on or off, or utilize 2-way radios or cell phones.
  • Assist disabled person(s) in exiting the building. Remember that elevators are reserved for disabled persons
  • Once outside, move to a clear area at least 500 feet away from the affected building. Keep streets, fire lanes, hydrants, and walkways clear for emergency vehicles and crews.
  • If requested, assist emergency crews as necessary.

 

The incident commander on the scene will notify the local Police Department of the situation. Do not return to an evacuated building until instructed to do so by a University official.

IN CASE OF EARTHQUAKES

GCU is not located in any area of earthquake fault zone. However, earthquakes occur without warning. They cannot be prevented or avoided; however, preparation and awareness of proper actions to take can lessen the danger for those involved.

1. Ground movement is seldom the actual cause of death or injury. Most casualties result from partial collapse of buildings, falling objects, and panic.

2. Things to do in advance:

  • Have a flashlight with good batteries available.
  • Know exit routes from each building that you use.
  • Keep a supply of drinking water.
  • Check your room or surroundings for hazards, such as bookcases, heavy objects on high shelves or hanging on walls, in advance of possible earthquakes

 
3. After an earthquake:

  • Give first aid, if needed; do not move seriously injured people.
  • Use telephones ONLY to request emergency assistance and try to send messengers if conditions permit.
  • Stay calm and act cautiously.
  • If you detect a gas leak, report it to emergency officials as soon as possible and move away from the area.
  • Do not return to an evacuated building until instructed to do so by a University official.

 
IN CASE OF VIOLENT OR CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR

In the event of violent or criminal acts:
Immediately dial 911 and report the following to the dispatch operator:

  • Nature of the incident
  • Location of the incident
  • Description of person(s) involved
  • Description of property involved
  • Any weapons involved
  • Welfare of the person
  • Report suspicious situations or persons to GCU Security.

 

Assist the officers when they arrive by supplying them with all additional information and ask others to cooperate. Should gunfire or discharged explosives threaten the campus, move to a place of safety immediately using all available cover and concealment. After the disturbance, seek emergency first aid, if necessary. If an emergency text of a shooting is received, turn out all lights and lock the door.

What to do if taken hostage:

  • Be patient! Time is on your side. Avoid drastic action. The initial 45 minutes are the most dangerous.
  • Follow instructions.
  • Do not speak unless spoken to and then only when necessary (e.g., medications, first aid, or restroom privileges).
  • Do not speak confrontationally to the captor, who may be in an agitated state. Maintain eye contact with the captor at all times if possible, but do not stare.
  • Be observant. You may be released or have the opportunity to escape. The personal safety of others may depend on your memory
  • Be prepared to answer questions from the police on the phone.

 

IN CASE OF FIRE

In all cases of fire, GCU Security must be notified immediately. If there is a pull station, pull it and then dial 911.

  • Dial GCU Security at 770-279-0507.
  • During a fire alarm in any building, you are required to evacuate immediately.
  • If you become trapped in the public area of a building during a fire, find a room, preferably with a window (keep window closed as much as possible), place an article of clothing (shirt, coat, etc.) outside the window as a marker for rescue crews. If there are no windows, stay near the floor where the air will be less toxic. Shout at regular intervals to alert emergency crews of your location.
  • If you are in a room when a fire alarm sounds, feel the door. If it is hot, do not open it. Seal the cracks around the door with a wet towel or other cloth fabric; place an article of clothing or a sheet outside the window or try to use the telephone for help. If you can safely leave your room, take your shoes, clothing, and room key and proceed to the nearest exit. Shout and pound on doors as you leave.
  • Know the locations of fire extinguishers, fire exits, and alarm systems in your area. Know how to use them in case of an emergency.
  • If a minor fire appears controllable, and a fire extinguisher is available, pull the pin, aim, squeeze, and sweep the fire extinguisher toward the base of the flame. Then call GCU Security.
  • If an emergency exists, notify GCU Security and activate the building alarm. Caution: the building alarm only rings in some buildings ? you must also report the fire by phone.
  • On large fires that do not appear controllable, notify GCU Security. Evacuate all rooms, closing all doors to confine the fires and reduce oxygen. Do not lock doors or open windows.
  • When the building evacuation alarm is sounded to signal that an emergency exists, walk quickly to the nearest marked exit and alert others to do the same.
  • Assist the disabled in exiting the building. Do not use the elevators during a fire. Smoke is the greatest danger in a fire, so stay near the floor where the air will be less toxic.
  • Once outside, move to a clear area at least 500 feet away from the affected building. Keep streets, fire lanes, hydrants, and walkways clear for emergency vehicles and crews.
  • If requested, assist emergency crews as necessary.
  • A campus emergency command post may be set up near the emergency site. Do not return to an evacuated building until instructed to do so by a University official.

 
IN CASE OF SERIOUS I L LNESS OR INJURY

In the event of a serious injury or illness:

  • Immediately dial 911 for assistance. Have bystander call GCU Security at 770-279-0507. Give your name, the campus location of the victim, and describe the nature and severity of the medical problem. Only trained personnel should provide advanced first aid treatment or CPR.
  • Keep the victim still and comfortable.
  • Ask the victim, “Are you ok?” and “What is wrong?”
  • Check breathing and give CPR if necessary and if you are properly trained.
  • Control serious bleeding by direct pressure on the wound.
  • Continue to assist the victim until help arrives.
  • Look for emergency medical ID, question witness(es), and give all information to the paramedics.

 
IN CASE OF GAS LEAK

In the event of a gas leak:

  • Call GCU Security at 770-279-0507.
  • Evacuate the building if the safety of faculty, staff, and students is threatened.
  • Open doors to promote cross-ventilation.
  • GCU Security or other emergency services will establish a safe perimeter. All persons except those needing to enter will be restricted. GCU Security may ask for assistance in establishing a perimeter. Do not return to an evacuated building until instructed to do so by a University official.

 
IN CASE OF SEVERE WEATHER / TORNADO

The State of Georgia is not prone to a high number of tornadoes. However, it is necessary to have an organized method by which to provide ample warning of the possibility of a tornado and to respond in the event a tornado has been spotted or the campus is struck.

  • Tornado Watch. A watch indicates that weather conditions are such that a tornado could form. Normal activities may be continued, but alertness for possible threatening conditions should be maintained.
  • Tornado Warning. A warning indicates that a tornado has been sighted or a tornado signature has been recorded on Doppler radar. All persons should seek appropriate shelter immediately. Tornado warnings are typically 45 minutes in length.Procedures
    Procedures to follow in the event of a tornado warning begin with the communications and warning system used by the city of Atlanta and Dekalb County. Sirens located in various parts of the city and county are used to alert citizens of a tornado warning. These sirens can be heard in and around most campus locations.

    In the event that conditions become conducive for a tornado:

    • GCU Security will monitor and track the storm.
    • When a warning sounds, all persons should move to an inner area on the first floor (where there are no windows, hall-ways, etc.) or a safe room built to withstand high winds.
    • When the warning is over, GCU Security will notify persons in each building by phone, text message, or in person.

    In the event of a threat of severe weather:

    • Contact GCU Security at 770-279-0507.
    • GCU Security will monitor the progress of the severe weather.
    • Check all first aid kits to ensure they are supplied.
    • Review evacuation procedures.

     
    In the event of severe weather:

    • Shut down all computers and electrical equipment that might be damaged.
    • The decision to evacuate a building will be announced by GCU Security.
    • Evacuate the building if the safety of the faculty, staff, students, and visitors are threatened.
    • Meet at a predetermined location away from the building.
    • Check all areas to ensure that everyone is evacuated.

     

 
IN CASE OF CHEMICAL SPILL OR RADIATION RELEASE

Georgia Christian University is adjacent to one of major traffic arteries, Peachtree Industrial Blvd. Many dangerous substances are transported daily on these routes and are susceptible to accidental release in the aftermath of collisions or fire. An example of this would be a release of anhydrous ammonia from tanks or chlorine being transported along the interstate. These toxic substances can be carried in cloud form and, depending upon variable winds, could threaten the GCU campus and its population.

In the event of a chemical spill or radiation release:

  • Immediately report the incident to GCU Security at 770-279-0507 and give the location, material(s) involved, and the extent of any injuries, if known.
  • Activate the building alarm. Caution: The building alarm may be a local alarm and therefore might ring only in the building; you should also report the emergency by dialing 911.
  • Evacuate the affected building or area and leave clear access for arriving emergency personnel.
  • Always move uphill, upstream, or upwind to avoid contamination.
  • Assist the disabled in exiting the building. Remember that elevators are reserved for the disabled person’s use. Do not use elevators in case of fire.
  • If requested, assist emergency crews as necessary.
  • A campus emergency command post may be set up near the emergency site.
  • Do not return to an evacuated building until instructed to do so by a University official.