Piedmont releases emergency preparedness plan

By JANIE HARRIS
Editor-in-Chief, News Editor

Towards the end of September, Piedmont College’s Campus Police released the Annual Safety and Security Report. This year, the police department went into more detail on the campus’s emergency preparedness plan, including what to do in an active shooter situation.

With the United States leading the world in mass shootings, according to the Wall Street Journal, President James Mellichamp decided it was time for Piedmont to implement a new plan for emergency situations.

“We utilized several different campus emergency preparedness plans to make ours,” said Campus Police Officer Josh Shiflet.

The plan outlined that every situation is different, and the necessary steps with in the plan are based on an officer’s own judgment. However, there are a list of actions to follow in certain situations.

“Do whatever it takes for you to be safe,” said Shiflett.

Shiflett said that Campus Police is currently fine-tuning details and preparing to train the faculty and staff. All of the campus police officers have been trained, but now they are focused on educating others. He also said that students can expect to participate in drills for various emergencies in the future.

“We are still working on it, as far as the specifics on it,” Shiflett said.

He said campus police’s biggest goal is to make sure the campus and all those on it are safe.

The emergency preparedness plan discusses what to do in more than just an active shooter emergency. It also informs readers of what to do in case of other emergencies, including weather emergencies and toxic spills.

Still, Shiflett’s advice for students and faculty is to read the plan.

“It goes into great detail regarding everything that everyone needs to know,” Shiflett said.

For the complete emergency preparedness plan and the Annual Safety and Security Report, visit piedmontroar.com.

According to the emergency preparedness plan, if there is an active shooter on campus, you should:

  1. Contact campus police.
  2. Clear all students and staff from hallways, if safety permits.
  3. Lock all doors and shut off all lights.
  4. Pull blinds down on windows, and try to stay out of the line of sight of windows.
  5. Get yourself and others down on the floor and up against a solid interior wall, and keep solid objects (desks, chairs, etc.) between you and doors and windows.
  6. Pile objects against the door if the door cannot lock.
  7. Maintain absolute silence, turning off any electronics that could make noise.
  8. Allow no one to leave the secured area.
  9. If you find yourself in an open area and unable to find a secure office or room to lockdown in, run away from the sounds of gunfire as fast and far as possible.
  10. If running away may somehow put you in danger, try to get behind a solid barrier. If possible, try to hide in a location that is out of sight.