Emergency procedures

In the event of an emergency, Murray State University will notify the campus community using the RacerAlert Emergency Notification System. The RacerAlert notice will give brief instructions to the community regarding actions that its members should take to remain safe. For more detailed instructions about how to react to emergencies, please refer to the following items:

Click the arrow for more information

Bomb threats

  1. Most bomb threats are received by telephone, although some may be made via e-mail or letter. If any form of bomb threat is received, remain calm and obtain as much of the following information as possible:
    • Location of bomb
    • Expected time of explosion
    • The bomb type
    • Reason it was placed
    • The name or affiliation of the caller 
  2. Immediately call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  Provide the dispatcher with all information obtained, most importantly, any specific details concerning location and/or time.  
  3. Do not touch or move unfamiliar objects.  If the threat is made by note or mail, do not handle.  Wait for Police to arrive.  
  4. The MSU Police will determine whether evacuation is warranted.  If the building is evacuated, account for all building occupants at the designated meeting area.

Chemical spills

Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health

If a chemical spill occurs that is determined to pose an immediate threat to any building occupant, proceed as follows:

  1. Immediately notify all building occupants of the area in which the spill has occurred.
  2. Notify MSU Police at 911 or 2222 to report the spill.  MSU Police will send a RacerAlert message giving appropriate instructions.
  3. Ensure that HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) for the building is shut down.  This may require a call to Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805).
  4. Evacuate the immediate area of chemical emergency.  Only if necessary, pull fire alarm to evacuate the building.  Contact MSU Police immediately and advise that the fire alarm has been activated and why.  Account for all building occupants at the designated meeting area.
  5. If direct physical contact is made with the spilled chemical, immediately remove all contaminated clothing.  Flush any point of bodily contact with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes and/or use a safety shower if one is available.
  6. Ensure that everyone exposed to the spilled chemical obtain medical assistance.

Not Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health

Follow the procedures listed below for spills involving chemicals that are definitively known to pose no immediate threat.

  1. Evacuate the rooms and close the door, but do not lock it.
  2. Immediately notify the building emergency coordinator and the Office of Environmental Safety and Health at 3480. After normal business hours contact MSU Police at 911 to report the spill. Be prepared to give the following information:
    • Building name
    • Building location
    • Floor number
    • Room number
    • Type of spill
    • Chemical(s) involved
    • Estimated volume of chemical(s) involved
  3. If trained and familiar with the hazards, attempt to contain the spill as much as possible.
  4. Avoid direct physical contact with the spilled material. If contact is made, remove any contaminated clothing and flush area with water for 15 minutes. Use a safety shower, if one is available.
  5. The Office of Environmental Safety and Health will notify the appropriate response agencies and assist in the spill cleanup.

Criminal activity

Report a crime in progress or suspected criminal activity to MSU Police at 911, 2222, or use the LiveSafe app.  Relay as much information as possible, including, when applicable:

  • The nature of the crime
  • The location
  • Physical description of the perpetrator
  • The type of weapons involved
  • Vehicle description and license number
  • Direction of travel when last seen
  • A photo or video if using LiveSafe app.       

DO NOT APPROACH OR ATTEMPT TO APPREHEND THE PERPETRATOR.  Stay on the telephone with POLICE until the first officer arrives.

Warning Signs of Danger

  • Possession of weapon
  • Suicide threats or statements
  • Detailed threats of violence
  • Rage for minor reasons
  • Destruction of property
  • Conflicts with peers, family, others

Early Warning Signs of Threat of Harm

  • Withdrawal
  • Feelings of isolation or rejection
  • Victim of violence or bullying
  • Uncontrolled anger
  • Talk of suicide
  • Depression
  • Marked changes in appearance
  • Expressions of violence in writings or drawings
  • Distorted or bizarre thoughts and statements

If you become concerned that an individual may pose a risk of harming him/herself or others, contact MSU Police at 911, 2222, or the LiveSafe app and give information on individual.

Earthquake

A major earthquake will cause shaking of the earth or building. This shaking may begin as a gently rocking motion or as violent jolt.

During an Earthquake

  1. Seek protection from falling debris in doorways, under desks or tables or in corners of rooms.  Do not seek cover under laboratory benches or tables, as chemical spills are possible.
  2. Do not use elevators.
  3. If outside, move away from buildings, power lines and trees.  Seek open areas.
  4. If driving, pull to the side of the road and stop immediately.  Avoid overpasses and power lines.  Stay inside the vehicle until the shaking has ceased.

After an Earthquake

  1. Collect personal belongings (coat, purse, cell phone), leave the building quickly and gather at the designated meeting area.
  2. If persons are injured, missing or known to be trapped inside the building, call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  It may be necessary to send a runner to MSU Police.
  3. To expedite rescue and emergency services, a sign should be posted on the front of the building with the following information:
    • The date
    • The time
    • The number of people known inside
    • The location(s) of the persons known inside
  4. Provide assistance to those who have mobility impairments or to those who may be trapped by fallen debris.
  5. Check for injuries, but do not attempt to move a seriously injured person unless there is a greater danger by not doing so.  Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.
  6. Use telephones only to report emergencies (i.e. gas leaks, fire or injuries).
  7. Only Facilities Management or other trained individuals should attempt to turn utilities on or off.
  8. Never touch downed utility poles or lines. Do not approach damaged building equipment.
  9. Avoid open flames due to potential gas leaks.
  10. Do not drive a vehicle unless warranted by an emergency.  Streets should be kept clear for emergency vehicles.
  11. Be prepared for aftershocks.  Aftershocks are usually smaller than the initial earthquake, but they may be strong enough to topple already damaged buildings.

Remember, a significant earthquake will affect an entire community.  Rescues and/or assistance may not be immediate.  During emergencies that render broad, citywide impacts, it may be necessary to assume responsibility for the safety of oneself and if possible, others in the vicinity who need aid.

Emergency phone numbers

  • All campus emergencies (MSU Police) - 911 or 270.809.2222 24 hours a day
  • Office of Environmental Safety and Health- 270.809.3480 (Office hours 7:30a.m.-4p.m.) 
  • Facilities Management - 270.809.4291 (Office hours 7a.m.-4p.m.) (after hours call 3805)
  • Student Health Services - 270.809.3809

Evacuation of physically impaired

In cases of emergencies, those individuals with physical impairments, who are not on the ground floor, may need assistance with building evacuation.

Ambulatory Individuals

Ambulatory individuals are those with disabilities that may impair rapid building evacuation. Examples include those who are blind, deaf or whose mobility is restricted by the use of walkers or crutches. Assistance to ambulatory individuals can be provided by guiding them to a stairwell, waiting until a clear passage is established and helping them down the stairs to the designated meeting area.

Non-ambulatory Individuals

Non-ambulatory individuals are those with disabilities that require the use of wheelchairs.  To assist these individuals, proceed as follows:

  1. Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  Provide the dispatcher with as much information as possible, most importantly, the location of the individual.
  2. Move the impaired individual into the stairwell and await assistance if there is no immediate danger within the vicinity of the stairs. Send a runner to the building accountability area and report where the evacuation assistance is necessary.
  3. If the hazard becomes life threatening, move the individual into a room and close the door. If evacuation is deemed necessary, proceed according to the established plan. Immediately inform emergency personnel of the location of the non-ambulatory individuals.
  4. Signal the emergency responders whenever possible by hanging an article of clothing from a window to attract attention and gain assistance.

Fire safety

Smoke, fire or an explosion in a building shall warrant activation of the nearest fire pull station which is located near an outside exit.

  1. Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  Immediately evacuate the building using established evacuation routes.  Do not use elevators.
  2. If possible, provide assistance to mobility-impaired individuals.  If this is not possible, or if anyone is injured, call MSU Police at 911.  Provide the location to arriving emergency services (fire, police, etc.) of physically-impaired individuals sheltered in the building.
  3. Do not attempt to extinguish the fire.
  4. Once outside the building, account for all building occupants at the designated meeting area.
  5. Do not re-enter the building or leave the campus unless advised to do so by the building coordinator, department chair or MSU Police.
  6. Give any known details of the alarm or fire to arriving emergency personnel.
  7. Report damage to Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805).
  8. Give any known details of the alarm or fire to arriving emergency personnel.

Video of a live burn of a mock dorm room at MSU - click below to open video link

Open Flame Policy

Open Flame Permit

Hazardous gas leaks

Flammable, toxic, corrosive, oxygen, cryogenic

  1. If a gas cylinder or gas piping begins to leak or is suspected of leaking, thereby presenting danger to building occupants, proceed as follows:
  2. Immediately notify building occupants to evacuate the area along the established route.
  3. Notify MSU Police at 911 or 2222 to report the details of the chemical emergency.
  4. Ensure that HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) for the building is shut down. Avoid open flames. This may require a call to Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805).
    • Be prepared to provide the following information:
    • Building name
    • Building location
    • Floor number
    • Room number
    • Specific chemical name of the involved gas
    • Estimated volume of gas
  5. Make every attempt to direct evacuating personnel away from the hazardous area. Account for all building occupants at the designated meeting area. Building occupants should not return until instructed to do so by the MSU Police or Murray Fire Department personnel.

Medical emergency

Do not leave the injured person unattended except to summon help.  Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.

Do not move a seriously injured person unless that person's life would be threatened by not doing so.

  1. Render first-aid or CPR if trained.
  2. When reporting a medical emergency, provide the following information:
    • Type of emergency
    • Location of injured
    • Condition of injured
    • Any dangerous conditions
    • Have someone stand outside the building to flag EMS as they reach the vicinity of the building.
  3. Comfort the injured person until EMS arrives.
  4. Have someone stand outside the building to flag EMS as they reach the vicinity of the building.
  5. If exposed to the injured persons' body fluids, wash the exposed area and contact a supervisor or the Office of Environmental Safety and Health at 3480 or Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805).

Toxic or infectious agents

Toxic/Irritant Gas Inside Building

  1. Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  Provide dispatcher with as much information as possible.
  2. Immediately evacuate the building using established evacuation routes.
  3. Account for all building occupants upon arrival at the designated meeting area.

Infectious Agents

  1. Call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.  Provide dispatcher with as much information as possible.
  2. Do not move or handle the material. Immediately vacate the building using the established evacuation route.
  3. Account for all building occupants upon arrival to the designated meeting area. Segregate those individuals who may have been exposed to an infectious agent.

Tornado

Tornado or Severe Thunderstorm Watch

A tornado or severe thunderstorm "watch" means that severe weather is possible, but not imminent. Proceed with normal activity, but continue to monitor weather-related reports. Listen to the local radio stations (WKMS, WRKY) and for the Murray State University warning sirens to sound.

Tornado Warning

A tornado warning is issued when a tornado has been sighted in the area. Murray State University's outdoor warning sirens will be sounded. If a warning (wavering tone) is issued, proceed as follows:

  1. Notify all building occupants.
  2. Seek shelter in a designated safe haven immediately. Basements and small interior hallways or rooms of lower floors with no glass provide the best shelter.  
  3. Do not remain in a vehicle. Seek shelter in a sturdy building. In cases where no obvious shelter is available, a ditch or ravine will provide some protection.
  4. After danger has passed, (solid tone indicates "all clear"), immediately report all injuries to MSU Police at 911 or 2222. Be prepared to give the following information:
    • Type of emergency
    • Location of injured
    • Condition of the injured
    • Any dangerous conditions
  5. Leave a damaged building immediately and do not attempt to return unless given permission by the building emergency coordinator or MSU Police personnel. Report to the designated meeting area and account for all occupants.
  6. Do no attempt to turn utilities or equipment on or off. Call Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805).

Severe Thunderstorm Warning

If a severe thunderstorm watch is in effect, be prepared to move to a designated safe haven in the event that the "watch" is upgraded to a "warning". If a warning is issued, proceed as follows:

  1. Notify other building occupants of the warning.
  2. Stay indoors and away from windows until the warning has expired.
  3. Report any injuries to MSU Police at 911 or 2222.
    Be prepared to give the following information:
    • Building name
    • Building location
    • Type of emergency
    • Condition of the injured
    • Any dangerous conditions

Utility failure

In a case of utility failure (electricity, water, gas or telephone), immediately call Facilities Management at 4291 (after hours 3805). If no answer call MSU Police at 2222.

  1. If phone service has been affected, attempt to use the university's computer network, if available.
  2. In cases involving persons trapped in elevators, call MSU Police at 911 or 2222.

In every case, be prepared to give:

  • Building name
  • Building location
  • Floor number
  • Room number (if applicable)
  • Nature of problem
  • Contact person or telephone extension

Remain in place until notified by the building emergency coordinator.  While emergency lighting is activated, exit stairs and exit doors should be illuminated.

Emergency lighting is temporary and is not provided to continue building operations.  The building emergency coordinator or department chair will determine if employees should continue working or leave the building.