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Active Threat Response

What do I do during an active threat situation?

Preliminary Information

When the appropriate campus authorities are notified of an active threat, a SAFE Alert message will be communicated.Over the course of the messages, the nature and location of the emergency will be described, specific actions will be recommended, and the communication method by which further instructions will be provided may be included. 

Simpson College employs a color coded system in order to effectively communicate the state of campus. It is likely a SAFE Alert message will include a corresponding color in the notification. A description of each color code can be found on the Simpson Alert For Emergencies page.

Active Threat Response

Active threats may include but are not limited to: situations posing a risk of violence to the greater campus community, natural disasters, and civil emergencies. In the event of being exposed to such circumstances, the list below has advice to consider:

Simpson College Shelter-in-place Guidelines

These Stay-in-place Guidelines serve as a general protocol of ways to respond to selected campus emergency situations. Each situation is different and may require a different response. This is for Red SAFE alerts.This action is an attempt to minimize the risk of violence and increase the safety of college students, employees, and guests by restricting access and visibility by a threatening person or event internal or external to the institution.

Procedures – In Campus Housing Location

  • Do not sound the fire alarm. A fire alarm would signal the occupants to evacuate the building and thus place them in potential harm as they attempt to exit.
  • Lock yourself in your room/apartment or any area that can be secured. This is referred to as the SHELTER IN PLACE. 
  • Lock the windows and close the blinds or curtains.
  • Turn off lights, AC and/or audio equipment that may lead to detection.
  • Put your cell-phone on vibrate and do not use it unless you are in contact with emergency personnel.
  • Barricade doors with thick objects that might help stop projectiles.
  • Move to corners of the room away from doors and windows. Get out of the line of sight and fire, lie flat, face down, on floor.
  • Remain calm and wait until the “All-Clear” is given by the emergency personnel. Do not approach them – let them come to you.

Procedures – In Non-Residence Hall Location

• If you are outside or in an exposed area, go inside the nearest building only if you think you can safely make it out of the area. If you cannot safely get inside a building, use bushes, trees, walls, cars and benches for cover. If you decide to run, do not run in a straight line. Try to keep objects between you and the threat.

• Once inside a building, do not sound the fire alarm. A fire alarm would signal the occupants to evacuate the building and thus place them in potential harm as they attempt to exit.

• If possible, lock yourself in any area that can be secured. This is referred to as the SHELTER IN PLACE. If the room cannot be locked, then barricade doors with thick objects that might help stop bullets.

• Lock the windows and close the blinds or curtains. Barricading windows may also be helpful.

• Turn off lights, AC and/or audio equipment that may lead to detection.

• Put your cell-phone on vibrate and do not use it unless you are in contact with emergency personnel.

• Move to corners of the room away from doors and windows. Get out of the line of sight and fire, lie flat, face down, on floor.

• Remain calm, quiet and out of sight. Assist others in your immediate vicinity as needed. Wait until the “All-Clear” is given by the emergency personnel. Do not approach them – let them come to you.

When the “All-Clear” signal is given by the emergency personnel:

• Check yourself and others for injuries.

• If police are present, obey all commands. This may involve your being handcuffed or made to put your hands in the air. This is done for safety reasons, and once circumstances are evaluated, they will give you further directions to follow.

• Preserve any physical evidence (don’t touch if possible).

* SAFE (Simpson Alert For Emergencies) is the emergency communication system that allows the College to send time-sensitive notifications via voice messages, emails, and text messages. The SAFE service can deliver one pre-recorded message to up to six phone numbers, two email addresses, and one text message. In all, the multi-modal service helps officials reach out to students and staff via: • Voice messages to home, work, and cell phones • Text messages to cell phones, PDAs and other text based devices • Written messages to email accounts • Messages to TTY/TDD receiving devices for the hearing impaired