Terrorism Emergency Response Guide
It is difficult to imagine the possibility of terrorist activity on our campus. However, our operations could be impacted by acts of terrorism elsewhere. For example, a portion of our campus may need be used to provide emergency services to the Pueblo community, or incidents in other cities could affect our communications or service vendors. Additionally, the definition of terrorism is broad and the possibility of terrorist-like activity in a campus setting has existed long before the events of September 11th.
If you suspect a credible threat exists based on your own observations or conversations that you have overheard, contact the CSU-Pueblo County Sheriff's Department (719.549.2373) or FBI (non-campus) to report.
There is little a department can do to prevent or completely prepare for terrorist activity. The best preparation is to review your departmental Building Safety emergency plans and ensure that they include current contacts and reporting procedures. Make certain everyone is aware of proper procedure and of their responsibilities in a possible emergency.
When reviewing your plans ask yourself these questions:
Do we rely on vendors or other resources off campus (e.g., Denver, or other major municipalities or government facilities)? If so, how would our operation continue to function without these resources? Do we have alternative resources?
How operations might continue if I were unable to enter my building or work area? How long could my program operate this way? What alternatives exist?
Are all the telephone numbers and contact people current? Do I know how to contact my staff at home? Do I have access to these numbers at home in the event I can not return to my office?
Are critical records backed-up and stored off campus?
Are there satellite locations for our programs off campus (e.g., in Denver)? If so, are they also addressed in our plan?
What are the most likely scenarios for our operations? ( Focus development of specific response procedures for these occurrences and use basic guidance from the CSU-Pueblo plan or EH&S websites to address more generic responses.)
The following procedures can be incorporated into your plans and should be communicated to appropriate staff.
ENVELOPE/PACKAGE WITH POWDER AND POWDER SPILLS OUT ONTO SURFACE:
- Ensure that the powder is actually from an identified suspicious envelope/package and not from a source that can be easily explained such as spilled baking soda, flour, artificial sweetener, construction dust, cleaner, or other material inherent to the area or area activity.
- DO NOT try to CLEAN UP the powder, taste or smell it.
- LEAVE the room and CLOSE the door, or section off the area to prevent others from entering (i.e., keep others away). Call the Heating Plant @ 549-2282 to have the HVAC system turned off. Note: This situation may not constitute an immediate evacuation of the entire building.
- WASH your hands with soap and water to prevent spreading any powder to your face. Wash your face as necessary only after a thorough hand and arm cleansing.
- Call the CSU-Pueblo County Sheriff's Department by dialing 911 from any phone.
- Remove heavily contaminated clothing as soon as possible with the assistance of EH&S. [For substantiated threats, local emergency hazmat responders will assist with decontamination/sanitation and collection of clothing and contaminated articles. If heavily contaminated with powder from a suspected Anthrax assault, await assistance before removing clothing and potentially spreading the suspect agent.]
- SHOWER with soap and water as soon as possible. Do Not Use Bleach Or Other Disinfectant On Your Skin.
- If possible, list all people who were in the room or area, especially those who had actual contact with the powder. Sheriff's department should give this list to both the local public health authorities so that proper instructions can be given for medical follow-up, and to appropriate law enforcement officials for further investigation as warranted.
ROOM CONTAMINATION BY AEROSOLIZATION:
For example: small device triggered, warning that air handling system is contaminated, or warning that a biological agent released in a public space.
- Turn off local fans or ventilation units in the area.
- LEAVE area immediately – evacuate affected areas. Evacuate entire building when threat has potential to affect entire building (i.e., air handler for building is potentially contaminated, various areas reported, etc. ).
- Try to keep group from the affected area together in one place following evacuation (isolate affected group from other evacuees)
- Keep potentially contaminated people on site, or identify them on a list (including contact information) before they leave.
- CLOSE the door, or section off the area to prevent others from entering (i.e., keep others away).
- Call Sheriff's Department by dialing 911 on any phone
- Call Heating Plant to SHUT down air handling system in the building.
- Again, if possible, generate list of people who were in the room or area. Sheriff's department should provide this list to both the local public health authorities so that proper instructions can be given for medical follow-up, and to appropriate law enforcement official for further investigation.
WHAT CONSTITUTES A LEGITIMATE THREAT?
The following are examples of items that should be considered a potentially legitimate threat. This list is not meant to be all-inclusive. Discretion and common sense should be employed when assessing these types of situations.
- An individual (s) makes a specific threat (says they have a device with a contaminate that they intend to, or have, disperse (d) into the area or into food/water being consumed.)
- An individual (s) in an area intentionally disperses something into the air using a mechanical device (with or without any communication or threat)
- A package or other article is discovered that has specific wording or other identification on it: identification of bomb or contaminate within; has threats or threatening wording on it; hate, or anti-American sentiments on it (e.g., Anthrax, explosives, “you will die . . .”, etc.). An abandoned package is discovered that is ticking or leaking a suspicious substance. [Call Sheriff's department]
- People in an area begin to complain of similar symptoms that have come on them suddenly (may be a potential chemical assault or accidental release of chemical irritant).
- Telephoned threat of a chemical or biological assault. [This should be handled the same as a bomb threat and will not constitute an immediate evacuation of the building – follow bomb threat procedures and call Sheriff's department -- unless other indicators are present as well (i.e., coincides with one or more of the other conditions previously identified.)]
SUSPICION OF FOOD CONTAMINATION
- Contact EH&S and Sheriff's Department to alert them to the potential concern.
- Contact the Weld County Health Department to see if similar symptoms have been reported elsewhere or to see if symptoms mimic current illnesses being experienced in the community.
- Contact the Student Health Center and alert them of the concern so they can recommend follow-up to patients.
- If a specific food/beverage item (s) is/are identified as potentially contaminated, remove from stock or food line. Isolate prepared items as well as the stock used to prepare the suspect items. Items may be sampled by Health Department or other agency. Isolate all utensils used to prepare or serve the suspect items.
Terrorism is the use of force or violence against persons or property in violation of the criminal laws of the United States for purposes of intimidation, coercion or ransom. Terrorists often use threats to create fear among the public, to try to convince citizens that their government is powerless to prevent terrorism, and to get immediate publicity for their causes. Acts of terrorism range from threats of terrorism, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, bomb scares and bombings, cyber attacks (computer-based), to the use of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. High-risk targets include military and civilian government facilities, international airports, large cities and high-profile landmarks. Terrorists might also target large public gatherings, water and food supplies, utilities, and corporate centers. Further, they are capable of spreading fear by sending explosives or chemical and biological agents through the mail. In the immediate area of a terrorist event, you would need to rely on police, fire and other officials for instructions. However, you can prepare in much the same way you would prepare for other crisis events.
PREPARING FOR TERRORISM
- Wherever you are, be aware of your surroundings. The very nature of terrorism suggests there may be little or no warning.
- Take precautions when traveling. Be aware of conspicuous or unusual behavior. Do not accept packages from strangers. Do not leave luggage unattended. Unusual behavior, suspicious packages and strange devices should be promptly reported to the police or security personnel.
- Do not be afraid to move or leave if you feel uncomfortable or if something does not seem right.
- Learn where emergency exits are located in buildings you frequent. Notice where exits are when you enter unfamiliar buildings. Plan how to get out of a building, subway or congested public area or traffic. Note where staircases are located. Notice heavy or breakable objects that could move, fall or break in an explosion.
- Assemble a disaster supply kit at home and learn first aid. Separate the supplies you would take if you had to evacuate quickly, and put them in a backpack or container, ready to go.
- Be familiar with different types of fire extinguishers and how to locate them. Know the location and availability of hard hats in buildings in which you spend a lot of time.