Emergency Evacuation for People with Disabilities

Planning – Preliminary Procedures

  • The time to plan for an emergency is before the emergency occurs. You should think about what you will do in the event of an emergency evacuation.
  • Plan ahead – know the areas where you work and study. Check all areas out completely. Is there ground floor access? If there is not, and you normally use an elevator to enter and leave a building, you will need evacuation assistance. Do this for all areas you travel to on campus.
  • Once you have a plan, practice that plan. If you would like someone to assist with developing an emergency assistance plan, contact the ADA Office at (352) 392-1591, 711(TDD).
  • Write down the emergency numbers and contacts from this pamphlet and keep them with you.
  • Employees should discuss emergency concerns with their supervisor. Students should discuss concerns with the Assistant Dean for Student Services. If you will need some type of assistance, notify the appropriate people. Employees and students are responsible for seeking appropriate assistance.
  • Find a friend/co-worker who is willing to assist during an emergency. It is suggested you find more than one friend/co-worker in the event that person is unavailable during an emergency.

What To Do In an Emergency

  • Call campus police (352) 392-1111 and emergency services (911). Report your name, location (room number or other area and building name). If you are going to an emergency exit, give the location of that exit (floor, compass location, e.g. NW tower, 3rd fl).
  • Report your situation — what type of assistance you may require (e.g. wheelchair user, breathing difficulties, blindness).
  • Ask co-workers/friends as the they leave the building to inform the emergency team on site of your location, your name, and situation (e.g. wheelchair user, blindness). To simplify this part, the ADA Office has developed an emergency assistance request card (see below) that can be handed to the co-worker, friend or faculty, who in turn will give it to the emergency team on site. For more information about the card please contact the ADA Office.

Preparation for Emergencies

**KNOW THE BUILDING IN WHICH YOU WORK OR STUDY**

  • Where are the entrances and exits on the floor which you work or live? Learn the location of all exits on each floor of the buildings you routinely use. When developing your Emergency Plan include at least two exits at each location. Check each area you use carefully. Examine stairwells and doorways for clearances.
  • Do you have access to the ground floor? Do you need an elevator? DO NOT USE ELEVATORS DURING AN EMERGENCY UNLESS INSTRUCTED TO DO SO BY EMERGENCY STAFF.
  • Know the location of a telephone in each area you frequent.

Where Do You Go In Case of an Emergency?

  • Do you stay in the classroom or office until help arrives?
  • Do you go to the nearest fire proof stair way?
  • The answer will depend upon the immediate situation and the building you are in. That’s why it is important to be familiar with all areas you frequent. Have a plan and use it.

There Is No Ground Floor Access. How Do I Exit the Building? Where Should I Go?

  • After you inform a co-worker/friend of your situation and have made the call to 9-911, go to the nearest emergency exit and wait until assistance comes. Or follow your individual emergency plan if it calls for something different.

Source: ADA Compliance Office (UF Environmental Health & Safety)

Version Date: 06/07/2012