Emergency Response Guide


Emergencies can occur at any time, without warning. Being prepared to handle emergencies, disasters, accidents, and injuries is essential. This is an individual, as well as an organizational, responsibility.

This guide is intended to be used by the faculty, staff, and students of Hartwick College as a quick reference in cases of emergency. All College employees should become familiar with its contents.

In any campus emergency, Campus Safety (x4111) should be the first contact, since it is the office on campus best equipped to deal with emergency situations.

Remember, in all emergency situations, your personal safety is the first priority. Here are some simple things you should do to increase your personal safety:

  • Register and update NY-Alert (https://users.nyalert.gov/). It takes only a few minutes, and the system will notify you via e-mail, cell phone, or pager in the event of an emergency. Be sure to identify your cell phone carrier. This will ensure you receive text messages on your cell phone in the event of an emergency.
  • Program emergency numbers into your cell phone. Campus Safety can be reached at: 607-431-4111 from any off-campus phone or cell phone. 911 or x4111 from any on-campus phone line.
  • Keep the exterior doors to your room or residence locked at all times.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Report suspicious persons or activities. If you see something, say something.
  • Familiarize yourself with all evacuation routes in your building, as well as the designated meeting areas for your building in the event of an evacuation.

In addition to this guide, there are detailed evacuation plans and shelter diagrams in all buildings and rooms to give direction in the event of an emergency.

The more prepared you are, the better you will be able to respond to an emergency. Any questions you may have should be directed to the Director of Campus Safety at x4112. 


  • Stay calm—others will respond as you do.
  • Become familiar with the areas you use, know your evacuation route and where to take shelter depending on the emergency.
  • Control the flow of information. Have a plan to disseminate who, what, when, where, how, etc.
  • If you are in charge of an area, delegate duties. Clearly communicate your needs and trust others to do their parts.
  • Use plain language during a crisis. Keeping things simple and straightforward will make things easier to understand.
  • Aid those whom you can without added risk. Follow instructions exactly when they are relayed.
  • Talk to each other. Prior conversations about what could happen and how to respond will help prepare us for a crisis.
  • Stress, fear, fatigue, and anger will be present in those around you.
  • Be prepared to deal with human nature. 


Hartwick has a variety of modalities it can use in the event of an emergency. These include:

  1. NY Alert System, which allows Hartwick to send timesensitive messages to registrants’ mobile phones, campus phones, e-mail, and/ or pagers. The benefits of this service are available for only those who register.
  2. Hartwick e-mail
  3. Campus phone
  4. Hartwick Web site (www.hartwick.edu)
  5. SNOW-Line (431-7669)
  6. Person-to-person contact


Call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111.

Advise the type of medical emergency or injury.

Advise if an ambulance is requested.

Give the location and a call-back number, if available.

Stay on the line with the dispatcher until he/she has all the needed information.

Campus Safety will respond to all medical emergencies or injuries and will contact the Oneonta Fire Department Ambulance as needed. 


Severe weather or tornado warnings are issued by the National Weather Service and the Otsego County Emergency Management Agency when severe weather is imminent.

Move to a designated severe-weather refuge area, as indicated on the evacuation plans in each building/room.

Stay away from windows and doors, and sit or lie on the floor with your arms folded over your head.

If outside, take shelter in the nearest building or a ditch/depression.

Once the storm has passed, call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431- 4111 to report any injuries or damage.

If the building is severely damaged, evacuate as soon as possible after the storm has passed.

Never go to a vehicle or attempt to run from a tornado or severe weather situation. 


Know what hazardous materials are in your workplace and the dangers they present.

Report all spills/exposures to Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111.

Give the following information: Location, type of spill and amount of material involved, injuries, identifiable chemical reactions, and a list of those who might have been contaminated by the spill.

Evacuate the area of the spill and close the doors to contain the spread until trained responders can arrive.

Contact Facilities at x4140 or 607-431-4140 to assist with ventilation systems.

Flush with water for 15 minutes any body part contacted with the hazardous materials.


In the event of a utility failure (electrical, water, gas, or telephone), contact Facilities management at x4140 or 607-431-4140, or Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111.

If phones are out, use cell phones to contact Campus Safety at 607-434-3943 or 607-432-0283.

Remain in place until advised to leave by either Facilities or Campus Safety, or until the utility failure is over. Exit hallways, stairways, and exit doors will be lighted by emergency lighting to aid in evacuation if necessary.


Upon discovering fire, smoke, or an explosion in the building, STAY CALM and activate the nearest fire alarm pull station.

Call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111 and be prepared to give information on location, size, and cause of the fire, as well as any injuries.

Follow posted room/building evacuation routes and account for all occupants of the room.


If trapped in a room, retreat and close as many doors as possible between you and the fire. Place cloth material around and under the door to stop smoke from coming in. Signal from windows and use phones/cell phones to advise Campus Safety of your location.

Provide assistance to handicapped individuals to the handicapped refuge areas (stairwells) and notify Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111 of any handicapped individuals and their location.

If forced to travel through the smoke, stay low and breathe shallowly, using a shirt or jacket as a filter.

Before opening any door, check first to see if it is hot to the touch. If the door feels hot—DO NOT OPEN IT!

Never re-enter the building once you have evacuated it until instructed to do so by the fire department or Campus Safety.

Remember to R.A.C.E
C—Close doors


Document as many details as possible, including caller ID number, if displayed.

Immediately call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111 and provide them with as much information as possible from the bomb threat call.

Immediately examine your area for any unusual or unfamiliar items.


Move to a safe location and wait for Campus Safety and the police.

Do not shake, open, or empty a suspicious package.

Evacuate the room and close the door. Make a list of all who were in the room and anyone who was in contact with the item.

Immediately call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-1111.

Wash any exposed skin areas with soap and water. Remove any contaminated clothing and isolate it.


Individuals with physical handicaps who are not on the ground floor may need assistance with building evacuation.

AMBULATORY INDIVIDUALS are those with disabilities that might impair rapid building evacuation, such as those who are blind, deaf, or using walkers or crutches.

Guide the individual to a stairwell and assist them in evacuating once a clear passage has been established.

Guide them to the designated evacuation area.

NON-AMBULATORY INDIVIDUALS are those confined to wheelchairs.

Move the individual to the handicapped refuge area near a stairwell and await assistance if there is no immediate danger.

Contact Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111 and provide as much information as possible on the location and condition of the individual.

If the hazard becomes life-threatening, move the individual to a room and close the door. Inform Campus Safety immediately of the new location of the individual.


In the event that an emergency situation arises, Campus Safety and/or other personnel will lock down some or all buildings on campus and order a shelter-in-place/lockdown by Hartwick’s emergency notification system.

Remain calm.

Lock your doors.

Close and lock your windows and blinds.

If you can do so safely, inform others in the area of the lockdown.

If someone needs assistance and you can do it safely, help them to the lockdown area.

If you are in an area that does not lock, use all available items, including desks, dressers, tables, chairs, etc., to barricade doors.

Stay low on the floor, away from windows and doors, and under desks if possible.

Do not leave the area until you are told to do so by Campus Safety or other authorized personnel.


When conditions outside of a building are safer than inside:

Remain Calm.

Do not run or use elevators.

Take the closest and safest way out.

Use a secondary route if the primary one is blocked or hazardous. If the emergency is a gas leak or a hazardous material spill, take the route that will keep you upwind of the problem area.

Assist those needing special assistance. (See Evacuation of the Handicapped.)

Do not stop for belongings or records.

Do not walk on roads, to avoid responding emergency vehicles.

Check for injuries—report injuries to emergency personnel.

Take attendance—report to emergency personnel.

Remain at the assembly area in case emergency personnel need more information or need to ask questions (i.e. missing persons).

Wait for further instructions.

Workplace violence may include the use of deadly weapons.

Advance warning is unlikely.

Contact Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111 in the event of any incident of workplace violence.


Immediately evacuate the building using established evacuation routes.

Do not disturb, move, or touch any suspicious packages.

Call Campus Safety at x4111 or 607-431-4111. Provide as much information as possible and stay on the line with the dispatcher, if it is safe to do so.

If there is a student, faculty, staff, or other person missing:

Immediately contact Campus Safety using 911 (from an on-campus phone) or x4111 or 607-431-4111.

Be prepared to give name and phone number, and to provide all possible information regarding the missing person:

  • Physical description.
  • Clothing when last seen.
  • Last seen location.
  • Physical condition at the time.
  • Vehicle information.
  • Description of who the person was with.

Be prepared to provide information on any known medical or special conditions.

Possible suicide attempt: In the event a person expresses suicidal thoughts or attempts suicide:

Remain calm.

Do not leave the person alone if you can remain with them safely.

Contact Campus safety by dialing 911 (on campus), x4111 or 607-431-4111.

If weapons are present, leave the area immediately.

Do not touch any weapons or other items that the person may consider using or has used.

Advise Campus Safety of any weapon present if you can do so safely.

Show support to the person without being judgemental.

Possible Suicide:
Immediately contact Campus Safety by dialing 911 (on campus), x4111 or 607-431-4111.

Do not touch anything in the area.

Remain calm and be prepared to give all information possible to Campus Safety, including your name, phone number, location, name of victim if known, and other pertinent information.

If you see or hear of a possible hostage situation:

Immediately remove yourself from any danger.

Remain calm and contact Campus Safety by dialing 911 or x4111 as soon as you can do so SAFELY.

Be prepared to give as much information as possible to Campus Safety, including your name and number, location, number of possible hostages, number of hostage takers, possible weapons, and descriptions and injuries to hostages.

If you are taken hostage:
Remain calm and cooperate with your captors.

DO NOT attempt to escape unless there is no danger in doing so.

If possible, call Campus Safety by dialing 911 or x4111 and leave the line open.

Do NOT draw attention to yourself.

Do what you are told.

Do NOT speak unless spoken to and DO NOT try to intimidate the captors.

Stay low below windows and behind cover if possible.

A weapon is described as any knife, gun, or dangerous instrument capable of causing death or serious physical injury to another.

If you observe a weapon on campus:

Remain calm.

Immediately contact Campus Safety by dialing 911 or x4111.

DO NOT touch the weapon.

If the situation warrants, remove yourself from the area in which the weapon is located.

Advise Campus Safety of your exact location and description of the weapon.

Follow all instructions given to you by Campus Safety or authorized personnel.

If you observe a person(s) with a weapon on campus:

DO NOT APPROACH the person(s) with the weapon.

Remain calm and contact Campus Safety by dialing 911 or x4111 as soon as it is safe to do so.

Provide all available information to Campus Safety, including your name, phone number, description of yourself and the person with the weapon, the type of weapon (if you know), and the number of weapons you observed.

Follow all instructions given to you by Campus Safety or other authorized personnel.

If you see or hear of an active shooter ON campus, immediately:

Contact Campus Safety by dialing 911 or x4111.

DO NOT approach the person with the weapon.

Remain calm and if it is SAFE to do so, immediately leave the area and advise others to do the same.

If possible, enter a building and go to a classroom or SAFE ZONE and secure the door, close the windows, turn off the lights, and stay low to the floor, away from the door.

If the door will not lock, use barricades to help stop it from opening.

DO NOT leave the area until you are instructed to do so by Campus Safety or other authorized personnel.

Follow ALL instructions given to you by Campus Safety and/or other authorized personnel.

Safe Zones are any lockable rooms on campus that can help prevent access by a possible intruder.

These areas include residence hall rooms, classrooms, locker rooms and offices.

If you are in these areas during a shelter-in-place/lockdown, stay in them until you receive further instructions from Campus Safety or other authorized personnel.

If you are not inside a SAFE ZONE when an emergency arises, you should move to one as quickly and safely as possible.

If members of the media are on campus covering an emergency of any kind, a member of Marketing & Communications will be the College's spokesperson and will answer all questions from the media. Please direct all inquiries or questions from the media to Hartwick’s communications office at 607-431-4031.