Armed Intruder
Winter Weather
Extreme Heat

Emergency Procedures for Classroom Instructors

As an instructor, we want you to be prepared to support your students in the event of an emergency while you are in the classroom. Please review these emergency procedures.


  • Stay inside until danger has passed.
  • Seek shelter on the lowest building level, interior rooms or hallways with interior walls. Use interior spaces with short spans. Stairwells, bathrooms and closets are good spots.
  • Put as many walls as possible between you and the exterior of building.
  • Avoid windows and doors with glass panels.
  • Avoid interior and exterior doors.
  • Avoid areas where chemicals are stored. Chemicals and cleaning supplies should be removed from areas designated for shelter use.
  • Unsecured items (shelving, supplies, wall lockers, etc.) should either be secured or removed from shelter areas.
  • Stay away from entrances. All doors around a shelter area should be closed and secured during a tornado warning.
  • Monitor or call 684-INFO for updates.
  • Wait for “all clear” by police or university officials.
  • For more information, visit: and

Armed Intruder

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recommends that you quickly determine the most reasonable way to protect your own life. Students, patients and visitors are likely to follow the lead of employees during an active shooter situation.

What If … Shots Fired
  1. Get Out:
    • Have an escape route and plan in mind.
    • Leave your belongings behind.
    • Keep your hands visible.
  2. Hide Out:
    • Hide in an area out of the active shooter’s view.
    • Block entry to your hiding place and lock the doors.
  3. Take Out:
    • As a last resort and only when your life is in imminent danger.
    • Attempt to incapacitate the active shooter.
    • Act with physical aggression and throw items at the active shooter.

Call 911 when it is safe to do so.

Winter Weather

  • Staff in “essential service” positions report to or remain at work.
  • Staff in “delayed service” positions do not report to or remain at work.
  • Those traveling should use only use priority roads, sidewalks, and walkways during periods of severe weather.
  • Use caution while traveling around campus as surfaces may be icy or slick. Sloped surfaces, stairs, ramps, and paths not identified as the preferred route of travel should be avoided.
  • Monitor or call 684-INFO for updates.


  • Secure any outdoor furniture or other loose items that could pose a danger in high winds prior to the storm.
  • Ensure all windows and exterior doors are closed prior to the storm.
  • Any flooding or property damage should be reported to the appropriate maintenance unit so crews can respond quickly. Unless a situation is life-threatening, crews may wait until after dangerous winds have subsided before responding.
  • Any potential safety-related issues, such as downed trees or power lines, should be reported immediately to Duke Police at 911 or 919-684-2444.
  • Monitor or call 684-INFO for updates.


  • Leave building.
  • Take personal belongings (keys, purse, cell phone, etc.).
  • Assist those with disabilities.
  • Convene in designated emergency assembly points.

Extreme Heat

  • Stay hydrated. Drink water regularly throughout the day.
  • Avoid caffeine.
  • Limit outdoor activity to morning or evening hours.
  • If outdoors, stay in the shade as much as possible.
  • Keep track of outdoor temperatures and personal comfort levels to know what temperatures feel too hot.
  • Dress in lightweight, light-colored cotton clothing.
  • If you start feeling significantly weakened, take a break.
  • In the event that demand for cooling via Duke’s chilled water system begins to exceed capacity, Duke may implement its emergency response plan, which could lead to groups of buildings being taken off the system for a limited amount of time.


When dealing with a fire, use the RACE acronym to remember how to proceed:

  • R-emove persons in danger. Exit through stairwell; do not use elevator.
  • A-ctivate alarm (Code Red) and dial 911.
  • C-lose doors and windows.
  • E-xtinguish fire. Have person knowledgeable of incident and area assist emergency personnel.


Major Chemical Spills

  • Alert people in the area to evacuate.
  • Turn off ignition and heat sources if spilled material is flammable.
  • Call 911.
  • Attend to injured or contaminated persons and remove them from exposure.
  • Have person knowledgeable of area assist emergency personnel.

Radiological Spills

  • Attend to the injured or contaminated persons and remove them from spill area.
  • Alert people in the area to evacuate.
  • Have potentially contaminated personnel stay in one area until they have been monitored and shown free of contamination.
  • Call 911.
  • Close doors and prevent entrance into affected area.
  • Have person knowledgeable of incident and area assist emergency personnel.
  • Document names of persons potentially contaminated.