Types of Emergencies

This page includes information on how to deal with specific kinds of emergencies.

Bomb Threats
Medical Emergency 
Power Outages
Suspicious Person 
Violent Incident
Winter Storm/Inclement Weather 
Other Emergencies

Bomb Threats

UVA Guidance on Bomb Threats

It is important to compile as much information as possible. Please DO NOT attempt to notify or evacuate an entire building as this could consume valuable time that would be better used to gather important information.

Please keep in mind that the vast majority of bomb threats are false and are primarily intended to elicit a response from the building occupants. Most bomb threats are transmitted over the telephone; the following instructions are provided with that assumption.  Further Instructions

  • Remain calm and immediately refer to the Telephone Bomb Threat Checklist. If applicable, pay attention to your telephone display and record the information shown in the display window.
  • The objective is to keep the caller on the line as long as possible and gather as much information as possible. Try not to anger the caller at any time.
  • While engaging the caller, pay attention to any background noise and distinctive sounds (machinery, traffic, other voices, music, television, etc.).
  • Note any characteristics of the caller's voice (gender, age, education, accent, etc.).
  • Attempt to obtain information on the location of a device (building, floor, room, etc.).
  • Attempt to obtain information on the time of detonation and type of detonator.
  • Immediately after the caller has ended the call, notify the University of Virginia Police at 911.
  • If the threat was left on your voice mail, do not erase.
  • Notify the immediate supervisor within your work area.


UVA Guidance on Earthquakes

  • If inside, stay there. Shelter in place – drop, cover and hold on.
  • If there is nothing to hide under, crouch near an interior wall and cover your head.
  • Only evacuate if additional hazards threaten your safety.
  • If you are outside, stay outside and move away from buildings, street lights and utility wires. 
  • Call 911 to report injuries, fire, gas leaks, debris, etc.


UVA Guidance on Fires

  • Activate the nearest fire alarm.
  • Exit the building via the nearest stairwell or exit and go to an exterior space. (Do not go to Spies Garden, which is technically defined as an indoor space by authorities.)
  • If smoke is present, stay low to the floor. 
  • Do not use the elevators.
  • Call 911 when it's safe to do so.
  • Fire extinguishers are located throuout the Law School on all floors.


  • A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions are a threat within 48 hours. Be prepared to act if a warning is issued.
  • A hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are expected within 36 hours. Be prepared to shelter in place or leave the area as directed. Keep your cell phone and laptop charged. Try to have water on hand and food that doesn't need refrigeration or heating.
  • Prepare for a Hurricane

Medical Emergency

UVA Guidance on Medical Emergencies

  • If the medical emergency requires immediate attention, call 911.
    • Give your name, telephone number, location (Law School building name, floor and room number, if possible) and a description of the situation.
    • Stay on the line with dispatch until they tell you to hang up.
  • The Law School has five AEDs — automated external defibrillators — on site and personnel trained to use them (more).
  • The Law School has five first aid kits on site (more).
  • Blue Ridge Poison Center - (800) 222-1222

Power Outage

  • Remain calm.
  • Unplug nonessential equipment. Turn off light switches.
  • If you are in an elevator that stops working, stay calm. Use the emergency button inside the elevator to call for assistance. 
  • Report the outage to Building Services, @email or (434) 924-4583; after hours and on weekends, contact Facilities Management at (434) 924-1777. 

Suspicious Person

UVA Guidance on Suspicious Person

  • Do not confront, stop or apprehend the person.
  • Note the person’s description, suspicious activity and his/her direction of travel.
  • Call 911.


UVA Guidance on Tornadoes

  • Seek shelter immediately. Go to an internal space at the lowest level of safety, away from windows and glass.
    • Indoor spaces at the Law School without glass windows include:
      • the Withers Brown lecture rooms
      • the first floor of the Law Library (northern segment)
      • the Slaughter Hall classrooms
      • the hallway in Slaughter Hall behind the bookstore and copy center
      • Caplin Auditorium
  • Close all doors, including main corridors
  • If you are able, crouch near the floor or under heavy, well-supported objects and cover your head
  • If you are outside and there is no sturdy structure to move into, lie down in a low area such as a ditch and cover your head.
  • Call 911 to report injuries, fire, gas leaks, debris, etc.

Violent Incident

UVA Guidance on Violent Incidents

  • Exit the building if a safe route is available.
  • If it is unsafe to leave, hide in an area out of view.
    • Lock the door and block entry to your hiding place using whatever is available (desks, tables, file cabinets, books). 
    • Stay away from the door and behind solid objects.
    • Turn off lights, computers, radios. Turn mobile phones to vibrate.
    • Call 911 when it is safe to do so.

Winter Storm/Inclement Weather

UVA Guidance on Severe Weather

The University monitors weather conditions and has exclusive authority to modify the Law School’s and the University’s operating schedule. Examples of schedule modifications include opening late, closing early, delaying the start time of exams, and canceling all classes and activities. Modifications to the schedule are communicated by the University via the following:

Sometimes, the Law School will provide guidance in advance of a potential weather event or follow up with additional instructions once the University has decided to modify the operating schedule. We typically do this via Law School-wide email distribution lists and the Law School website. As a result, please be alert to communications from both the Law School and the University.

In advance of a potential weather event, please charge your cell phones, laptop computers, and other devices so that you will be able to access communications from the University and the Law School, work remotely when needed if you are an employee, etc.

For employees, some communications from the University might refer to an employee’s emergency event status (or emergency reporting status). “Designated” employees (e.g., police officers and road maintenance crews) are expected to report to work at the University in all weather events, while “non-designated” employees (e.g., Law School employees) are generally expected to remain at home if so instructed. However, there will be some occasions, depending on the nature of the weather event and on the situation at the Law School, when certain Law School employees will need to come in to the Law School. On those occasions, you will receive additional guidance from your manager or the Dean’s Office.

For weather- and building-related questions, contact Greg Streit at @email or (434) 982-2802; for Human Resources questions, contact Diddy Morris at @email.