4.124 Business Affairs & Finance
DISASTER POLICY
Date Adopted/Most Recent Revision: 08/04/2006

 

A.     Purpose

The purpose of these regulations is to acquaint all employees and students with the university's policies associated with disasters and related trauma events.

1.     Tornado

A violent local storm with whirling winds of tremendous speed, it appears as a rotating funnel-shaped cloud which extends toward the ground from the base of a thundercloud. Peak time for tornadoes is from March through June, but one could occur at any time of the year.

a.     Tornado Watch

A tornado watch means that weather conditions are favorable for tornadoes to develop. Go about normal daily activities but be alert to the weather. In the event a tornado watch is issued by the National Weather Service, the University Police shall be responsible for notifying the President or, in his absence, the next person in line of authority available; the university switchboard; the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management; and Residence Hall Directors. If the watch is issued during regular working hours, the switchboard will then notify all administrative and departmental offices of the watch and its expected duration. Persons taking the call from the switchboard or Police will use their discretion in notifying others in the building.

b.     Tornado Warning

A tornado warning means that a tornado has actually been sighted or indicated on radar. (Take refuge in a place of safety immediately.) The National Weather Service issues weather warnings to the public over radio and television stations. The City of Wichita Falls will sound warning sirens. Procedures to be followed at MSU if a tornado warning is sounded:

1.     Under no circumstances should students, faculty, or staff attempt to leave campus while the warning is in effect.

2.     Faculty should not dismiss classes. Students should be directed to an interior hallway on the lowest floor of the building. Persons should lie on the floor as close to the wall as possible. Auditoriums, gymnasiums, or other free-span rooms should be avoided.

3.     If the building in which an individual is located is not steel-framed or reinforced concrete construction, and time permits, the individual should move as quickly as possible to the nearest reinforced structure. Otherwise, he/she should move to a small room in the interior part of the building and, if possible, seek shelter under heavy furniture away from windows. Unreinforced buildings on campus are classrooms- Music, Music Education, Instrumental Music (Band Hall), MckGaha Hall, and McCullough Hall; staff buildings - Vinson Health Center, Welding Shop, and Paint Shop; residence halls - Sunwatcher Village.

4.     Because of the possibility of a power failure, elevators should not be used.

5.     Because there is the danger that high pressure seam lines could burst, university tunnels (including those labeled fallout shelters) should be avoided.

6.     Tornado drill procedures and tornado warning procedures for University Housing are outlined in the current University Housing and Residence Life Handbook.

c.     Special Functions

Because large groups of people frequently gather for special functions on campus, the follow plan is developed for Ligon Hall, Fain Fine Arts Building, Akin Auditorium, Bolin Hall, and Clark Student Center.

1.     Should a tornado watch be in effect at the time of a special function, the President or the next person in line of authority present will make the decision as to whether conditions are sufficiently threatening to warrant postponing or canceling the event.

2.     In cases where a warning is sounded while a special function is in progress and evacuation from large free-spanned areas is warranted, the President or the next person in line of authority will make the decision to move those in attendance to safety. The announcement should be made in a clear and calm manner and should include specific instructions on where persons in attendance should go.

3.     When an outside group or individual reserves D. L. Ligon Hall, Akin Auditorium, Fain Fine Arts Center Main Theatre, Clark Student Center or Rooms 100 or 127 or Bolin Hall for a non-university related event, the university office in charge of confirming the reservation will be responsible for advising the sponsor that the university cannot provide the supervisory personnel necessary to implement emergency procedures. This may be accomplished by including the following paragraph in the letter of confirmation:

"Please be aware that as the sponsor for this event you must be responsible for providing sufficient supervisory personnel to ensure the safety of persons in attendance. A copy of the university's emergency procedures manual is available in my office and you are urged to become thoroughly familiar with it in the unlikely event an emergency should arise during your function."

a.     D. L. Ligon Hall

Persons in attendance should be directed to locker rooms, varsity and visitor dressing rooms, interior classrooms and offices, and the weight room via the east hallway. Persons on the floor area should be moved into the teams' dressing rooms. Persons on the east side of the upper deck should be moved to the men's locker room via the east hallway. Persons on the west side of the upper decks should be moved to the weight room and women's locker room.

b.     Fain Fine Arts Center

Persons should be directed to hallways adjacent to the auditorium on all three levels either ends of the foyer, and the restrooms. Persons in the production backstage should take cover in small classrooms and hallways adjacent to the stage area.

c.     Akin Auditorium

Persons should be directed to hallways in Hardin Hall.

d.     Bolin Hall, Rooms 100 and 127

Persons should be directed to inner hallways.

e.     Clark Student Center

Persons should be directed to inner hallways and inner offices.

2.     FIRE

In case of fire, the following procedures should be followed:

a.     The person discovering the fire will notify the Wichita Falls Fire Department (Phone Number 9-911) and then call the University Police Department (Ext 4239)

b.     The person discovering the fire will immediately give a vocal alarm in the building, pull the building fire alarm and make an attempt to extinguish the fire before it spreads if possible.

c.     The building in which the fire is located will be evacuated under the supervision of the first faculty or staff member on the scene, and personnel will be moved a minimum of three-hundred (300) feet from the location of the fire.

d.     Fire drill procedures and fire evacuation procedures for University Housing are outlined in the current University Housing and Residence Life Handbook.

e.     When a fire alarm is sounded in a building, all persons will leave the building until it is determined to be safe to re-enter.

3.     BOMB THREATS

Compared with other university emergencies, the covert and criminal nature of bombing incidents makes detection and disarming of explosive devices a highly dangerous problem. A high percentage of all bomb threats are hoaxes; however, the chance remains the threat may be authentic and appropriate action should be taken in each case to provide for the safety of people and property. Procedures to be followed at MSU in case of a bomb threat are:

a.     When a report of a bomb threat or explosion occurs, an immediate report should be made to the University Police Department.

b.     University Police will notify the President or, in his absence, the individual next in line of authority.

c.     The decision to evacuate a building shall be made by the President or, in his absence, the individual next in line of authority.

d.     Buildings should not be evacuated nor alarm sounded until evidence of danger is determined or so ordered by the President.

e.     Key building personnel along with other key administrative personnel will be notified in buildings specified as alert areas by the University Police Department.

f.      No unauthorized persons are to be advised of the bomb threat.

g.     University Police will notify the Wichita Falls Fire Marshall's Office.

h.     Building searches are to be coordinated through the University Police Department, and under the direction of the Chief of Police.

i.      The location of any questionable package will be reported to the Chief of Police who, in conjunction with the Wichita Falls Fire Marshall's Office, will take charge of its removal.

j.      The following information should be obtained by the person receiving the call:

1.     Which building?

2.     When is the bomb set to go off or explode?

3.     Where is the bomb located in the building?

4.     What type of explosive?

5.     How big is it?

6.     How is it packaged?

7.     What color is it?

8.     How can it be disarmed?

9.     Who set the bomb?

k.     The following additional information is important.

1.     Exact time of report

2.     Estimated age of caller

3.     Sex of caller

4.     Emotional behavior

5.     Exact words used

4.     Chemical Accidents

The likelihood of the university suffering a major disaster caused by a chemical accident would be confined mainly to Bolin Hall, third floor. First aid suggests the uses of large amounts of running water to remove chemicals from skin and eye exposure. Procedures to be followed at MSU in case of a chemical accident are:

a.     In case of personal exposure, the professor or instructor in charge of the lab will flush exposed area of affected person with a large amount of running water. If the nature of the exposure is serious, the professor will cause the affected person to be treated at the Vinson Health Center, or call an ambulance, notify the Director of Vinson Health Center, and have victim transferred to a hospital for treatment. The MSU Police Department will be notified.

b.     In cases of large areas of contamination, the professor in charge will cause the alarm system to be activated and the building cleared. The MSU Police Department will be notified, and, in conjunction with the Wichita Falls Fire Department, secure and take measures to clear the building of all fumes and dangerous materials.

c.     A chemistry professor with knowledge of the contaminant will make himself available to the Police and Fire Departments for consultation on chemicals involved in the accident.

B.    Disaster Procedures

In the event a major disaster, such as a tornado, should strike the campus, the President of the university, or in his absence, the individual next in line of authority will be responsible for the specific areas indicated.

1.     University Chief of Police

Coordinates all rescue operations to include searching for survivors, crowd and traffic control, establishing an emergency shelter and command post if needed, and establishing contact and coordinating operations with the City of Wichita Falls.

2.     Associate Vice President for Facilities Services

Provides whatever equipment and personnel might be needed to assist the University Police in performing rescue operations, and provides the Director of Marketing and Public Information with an accounting of damage for release to the media.

3.     Director of Vinson Health Center

Provides whatever on-campus medical assistance might be necessary, including manning any emergency disaster shelter.

4.     Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management

Accounts for students on campus at the time of the disaster, especially residence hall residents, and reports deaths and injuries to the Director of Marketing and Public Information.

5.     Director of Human Resources

Accounts for faculty and staff on campus at the time of the disaster and reports deaths and injuries to the Director of Marketing and Public Information.

6.     Director of Marketing and Public Information

Advises the President of all deaths, injuries, and property damage; releases the information to the media; and, in cases of death or serious injury notifies next of kin prior to releasing names.