Evacuation and Shelter

All campus personnel are responsible for being familiar with emergency procedures and the location of fire alarm pull stations, emergency exits, fire extinguishers, assembly areas and shelter-in-place locations.  Staff and faculty are highly encouraged to incorporate the needs of the disabled into emergency plans and exercising them routinely. 


Temporary safety technique utilized to limit exposure to a direct threat. 

Examples which may result in a Lockdown: 

  • Armed intruder 
  • Active assailant 
  • Civil unrest 
  • Violent demonstrations 
  • Wanted suspect on the loose  

Actions to take:  

  • Run, Hide, Fight
  • Seek refuge in a locked room or office (less windows, the better) 
  • Move away from glass windows or doors  
  • Lock or barricade all perimeter doors into your area 
  • Cover windows or close blinds 
  • Turn off lights (if practical) 
  • Prohibit entry or exit to anyone  
  • Stay out of sight and minimize movement 
  • Set all noise-making communication devices to silent with no vibration, such as cell phone and pagers 
  • Keep calm and quiet 
  • Stay in Lockdown until you receive an “all clear” notification from police


Temporary safety technique utilized to limit exposure to harmful atmosphere. 

Examples which may result in a Shelter-in-Place: 

  • Hazardous materials (i.e., chemicals) have been released into the atmosphere 
  • Wildfire smoke 
  • Air Quality emergency 
  • Severe weather or storms 
  • Nuclear detonation 

Actions to take: 

  • Go indoors immediately to isolate yourself from the external environment 
  • Select a small interior room, with no or few windows, and take refuge there 
  • Close all doors and windows to prevent outside air from entering 
  • Turn off all fans and Heating Ventilation and Air Condition (HVAC) systems (if possible) 
  • If not possible, attempt to cover vents 
  • Be prepared to improvise and use what you have on hand to seal gaps so that you create a barrier between yourself and any contamination 
  • Turn on air purifiers and/or air scrubbers (if available) 
  • Prepare to self-sustain until further notice and/or contacted by emergency personnel for additional direction. 
  • Monitor communications (e.g. Dateline, WarnMe) for updates on the situation and the 'all-clear' message. 

For Shelter-in-Place, you do not need to barricade your entire office.


Full- or partial-campus movement of people, animals, and (potentially) research from a dangerous place to somewhere safe, if safe to do so.

  • Evacuation Order – A notification of immediate threat to life. Evacuate now. 
  • Evacuation Warning – A notification for imminent or potential threat to life and/or property. Prepare to evacuate. 
  • Evacuation Advisory – A notice to be on alert and follow recommendations by authorities.  

Actions to take:  

  • Immediately move out of and away from the building being evacuated.


Required Accessibility 

Accessible Evacuation Guidance for Individuals with Access and Functional Needs (AFN)

  • Work with supervisors and coworkers to develop a personalized evacuation plan  
  • Established the Buddy System early on by pre-identifying coworkers agreeing to assist in an emergency  
  • Do not become separated from personal care assistant, service animal or assistive device(s) 
  • Only under extreme cases will your assistant need to leave to inform responders of your location 
  • If you are alone and cannot evacuate, immediately call 911 and inform them of your location.  

Accessible Evacuation Guidance for Aides

  • Never presume that a person wants or needs assistance in an emergency:  Ask first 
  • Never guide by grabbing a visually impaired person’s arm, ask them if they would like to grab yours 
  • Communicate circumstances to individual through notes, guidance, and/or gestures 
  • Point out nearest evacuation route, maps, exits, and assembly area 
  • Help move debris that may be impeding their evacuation 
  • Assist in finding them a safe area of refuge to shelter-in-place if evacuation is not possible 
  • Notify responders immediately about people remaining in the building and their location 

Accessible Horizontal Evacuation – Moving to a safer area on the same level 

  • If on ground level and safe to do so, exit outside 
  • If unsafe to exit building, move to unaffected wings or areas within the same building 
  • Call 911 with location and condition of anyone remaining in building 

Accessible Stairway Evacuation 

  • Use stairway to exit building 
  • If mobility impaired but able to walk under your own power, proceed after heavy traffic has passed 
  • Trained responders should conduct stairway evacuation of a wheelchair user 
  • Only in situations of extreme danger should untrained people attempt to evacuate wheelchair users 

Accessible Shelter-in-Place 

  • Move to pre-identified shelter-in-place location (ideal locations include: telephone and email accessibility for status updates, solid or fire resistant door, exterior window) 
  • Turn off ventilation and seal doors, windows and vents if contaminants are present or suspected 
  • Persons using a wheelchair should consider this action if evacuation is not possible 

Accessible Lock Down 

  • Hide in pre-identified areas or your immediate work area if the threat does not allow movement 
  • Help conceal those that require assistance 
  • Consider assistive equipment to secure hiding spots 
  • If required, use all resources to attack (ram attacker with power chair, hit with cane, etc.) 

Contact UC Davis Disability Management Services at 530-752-6019 for additional disability assistance and information.