At times a life-threatening, hostile or hazardous situation may arise on or near property owned or managed by Concordia University Texas requiring the implementation of what is known as a lockdown. Such a procedure exists to protect human life and property and make resolution of a threatening situation easier for law enforcement agencies.
A "lockdown" is a temporary “sheltering-in-place” technique utilized to limit human exposure to an apparent life-threatening, hostile or hazardous situation or threat. When a lockdown is declared by Campus Police or administrative officials, occupants of any building within the impacted area are to remain in their respective spaces locking all doors and windows, not allowing entry or exit to a secured area until the “all clear” confirmation has been given. Individuals may be required to move to a safe location if they are immediately adjacent to the life-threatening or hazardous situation (e.g. shooter, bomb threat, etc.). In all cases, individuals must follow directions of Campus Police and appropriate law enforcement officials.
Examples of a life-threatening or hazardous situations includes, but is not limited to:
- Someone has a gun or weapon on campus or there is an active shooter or shots are heard on campus
- Execution of a high risk search or arrest warrant of a potentially dangerous suspect
- Serious crime that is actively occurring on campus (e.g.: homicide, hostage situation, aggravated assault, robbery with a deadly weapon, sexual assault, etc.)
- Serious crime committed in close proximity to the campus or a campus building (e.g.: homicide, hostage situation, aggravated assault, robbery with a deadly weapon, sexual assault, etc.)
- Inclement weather (e.g.: ice storm, tornado in close proximity to campus, etc.)
- Hazardous chemical spill
Due to the varying scenarios and situations that might occur on campus or near a Concordia facility and the dynamic nature each scenario presents, it is imperative for individuals to stay alert and be aware of the proper precautions and procedures to take when a lockdown is necessary. When instructions are given for a “lockdown” by a member of the Campus Police or designated administration official (e.g.: Vice-President of University Services, Director of Residence Life, Dean of Students, etc.), the following procedures are to be implemented immediately:
- Active Shooter or Hostage Situation:
- If preceding an order to "lockdown" gunshots are heard in or around a building or once the notice to "lockdown" has been issued, take the following actions:
- Try to remain calm — but follow instructions of Campus Police or the designated administrative official.
- Remain indoors and go to the nearest room trying to stay away from windows.
- Do not seek shelter in open areas such as hallways or corridors. Go to the nearest classroom, office, conference or storage room that can be locked.
- Once a "lockdown" has been initiated individuals are not allowed to leave buildings unless an all clear has been sounded or directed to by Campus Police or the designated administrative official.
- Lock all doors and windows.
- If an individual is not in a room that can be locked, try to find a space that has a locking door.
- Turn off all lights.
- Individuals should attempt to stay away from windows. This may require hiding under a desk or behind furniture.
- Remain silent so as not to attract attention.
- Turn off all radios or other devices that emit sound.
- Silence cell phones.
- Only use a cell phone to contact Campus Police or law enforcement. Talking or any type of noise could draw the attention of a shooter so be careful.
- If gunshots are heard lay on the floor, preferably behind a heavy object, such as a desk, table or filing cabinet.
- If appropriate turn off gas and electric appliances to reduce noise or the threat of a fire.
- If outdoors seek shelter behind a building, wall or large tree. It is important to “hide” from a shooter.
- If there is a group of individuals clustered together (such as a classroom or meeting), the instructor or leader should compile names and keep attendance to make sure everyone remains present and accounted for should an evacuation be necessary.
- Do not unlock doors or attempt to leave until instructed to do so by Campus Police or the designated administrative official. The "all-clear" will be announced via an appropriate system, such as the CTX Alert system, public address system, phones, etc.
- Always stay alert to rapidly changing and dynamic situations. Staying calm is crucial. Hysteria can lead to making poor decisions or taking needless risk.
- Serious Crime Occurring or Committed in Close Proximity to Campus:
- Specific instructions/actions to be taken will be based upon the specific crime or incident that is or has recently occurred, and will be disseminated by the appropriate means to the campus community.
- The actions listed under Active Shooter Incident above may apply, but will ultimately be determined by Campus Police. It is critical for everyone subject to a lockdown to follow instructions of Campus Police or the designated administrative official.
- Inclement Weather-Related Incident:
- Specific instructions/actions to be taken will be based upon the specific weather-related incident that is actively occurring, and will be disseminated by the appropriate means to the campus community.
- In the event of a tornado it may require evacuation of individuals into the campus “tunnel” system, fieldhouse locker rooms or spaces without windows. Individuals need to stay alert to changing weather conditions and follow the instruction of Campus Police or the designated administrative official.
- Hazardous Materials Spill Incident:
- Specific instructions/actions/containment procedures to be taken will be based upon the specific hazardous materials-related incident that is actively occurring, and will be disseminated by the appropriate means to the campus community.
- In the event of a chemical spill toxic fumes may result. Individuals need to stay alert to wind direction and weather conditions and follow instructions of Campus Police or the designated administrative official.
Consequences for Non-Compliance with Lockdown Procedures:
In the event a student or employee fails to comply with an order from a member of Campus Police or the designated administrative official during a “lockdown” situation, they may be subject to the following consequence(s) or punishment(s):
- Criminal charges may be filed against anyone disregarding a lawful order of Campus Police, law enforcement personnel or designated administrative official during a lockdown. Disregard of orders can place others in danger and have a serious impact on the safety of individuals and property. It is important for everyone involved in a lockdown to follow the directions of those in charge of managing the situation.
For example: A shooting has occurred near campus and the suspect is last seen running toward Concordia property. Campus Police order a “lockdown” of all buildings. Everyone is ordered to stay indoors and in the nearest room. A student living in student housing decides to disregard the order and goes out to the parking lot and drives their vehicle off campus. This would be an example of disregard for the “lockdown” situation. It may lead to criminal charges being filed, especially if the lives of others are put at risk.
- Civil penalties may be assessed against anyone creating a situation that may lead to a lockdown. Penalties will be decided by Campus Police on a case-by-case basis depending on the gravity of the situation.
- Disciplinary penalties/measures may be utilized for students or employees who willfully fail to comply with a lawful order of Campus Police, law enforcement personnel or designated administrative official during a lockdown. The penalty may be suspension from school or work. Any disciplinary action would be coordinated with either the Dean of Students or respective supervisor, in the case of an employee.
It is anticipated that everyone involved in a lockdown situation on campus or at a facility managed by Concordia University will comply with all directions and orders issued by Campus Police or a designated administrative official. The circumstances leading to a “lockdown” are normally quite serious and can lead to loss of life or injury if not followed. It is important for Campus Police and designated administrative officials to remain in control of such volatile situations in order to protect public safety and property. While the University does not want to discipline people for non-compliance to a lockdown order, it does retain the right to prosecute such behavior or to assess penalties or discipline individuals who willfully endanger their life or the lives of others around them by willful non-compliance.
This page was last updated on Sep. 28, 2011.
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