Public Safety

Emergency Procedures

The emergency procedures listed below provide guidance for a multitude of emergency events. Please review the documents for information on bomb threats, suspicious activities and packages, active shooters, Prevention Through Intervention, hazmaterial situations, civil disturbance and pandemics.

To learn more about building safety features and how to be prepared and safe on campus, please view our Building Preparedness Powerpoint. If you are interested in a building-specific presentation, please contact Ed Dadosky at or 513-556-5958, or Pia Washington at or 513-556-4986.

Active shooter situations are unpredictable and develop quickly. An active shooter is an individual engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in confined or populated areas. In most cases an active shooter uses a firearm.

When responding to an active shooter you should "Run. Hide. Fight." Please see the links and the video below for more detailed information.

Sandy Hook PSA - Learn Subtle Signs of Potential Gun Violence

How to Respond to an Active Shooter (PDF)

Shelter In Place

Run. Hide. Fight.

For active shooter situations, the response recommended by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is Run. Hide. Fight. To learn more, please view the following video demonstration: Run. Hide. Fight.

Threats against the university are taken very seriously. UC Police's K-9 Unit has specialized expertise in responding to bomb threats, suspicious packages and other related hazards. They are used at many special events around campus and throughout the region as a preventative measure to ensure a safe environment for the students, staff and visitors at UC and other venues. The City of Cincinnati and Hamilton County Explosive Ordinance Device (EOD) resources are also available for further assistance. The content below outlines how the university handles bomb threats, including communication and evacuation procedure.

Bomb Threat Procedure

A. Communications

When a telephoned bomb threat is received at the University of Cincinnati Communications Center, the dispatcher will attempt to elicit all available information from the caller. If the threat is received at another location, and relayed to the Communications Center, the dispatcher will attempt to gather as much information as possible from the secondary caller.

B. Evacuation

The fire alarm system may be used to initiate evacuation. If the building is evacuated, the public will be moved a safe distance from the building perimeter. Consideration should be given to the fact that devices are commonly placed in trash cans, in shrubbery, and vehicles next to buildings. Building entrances will be secured against re-entry by posting officers, signage, or barricade tape as appropriate and dependent on availability.

C. Radio Communications

The building or area in question will be searched by officers, with the assistance of area staff and/or maintenance, if advisable and contingent on incident circumstances. The shift supervisor will maintain a fixed command post and remain in direct contact with the personnel responsible for the area under threat. On scene staff receiving such a call will be interviewed for all possible details of the call. Do not touch or handle a suspicious device or package once located.

D. Bomb Threat Call Procedures

Bomb threats are to be treated as real threats, until proven otherwise. Take note of exactly what is said, the sound of voices, and any background noises.

  1. Remain calm. Keep caller on the line as long as possible. Keep the caller talking to learn information.
  2. Listen carefully. Be polite and show interest.
  3. If possible while speaking to the caller, write a note to a colleague to call the authorities.
  4. If your phone has a display, write down the number.

Do not use a two-way radio or cellular phone in the vicinity of a suspicious package; radio signals have the potential to detonate a bomb; leave the building if no landline is available and a cellular phone must be used to call 911; Do not touch or move a suspicious package.

E. Information to get from the caller:

  • Where is the bomb located?
  • When will it go off?
  • What does it look like?
  • What kind of bomb is it?
  • What will cause it to explode? 

The University of Cincinnati Environmental Health & Safety Department has plans in place for handling hazardous chemicals, radiation safety and chemical hygiene. Please click on each individual link below to learn more.

Lab Safety Information

Hazardous Materials Information

Handling Hazardous Chemicals - General Principles

Management of Chemical Wastes

Radiation Safety

Category: Student Affairs & Services
Policy applicable for: Faculty/Staff/Students

Policy Title: Missing Residents in Campus Housing Facilities

Effective Date: 04/01/2011
Prior Effective Date: None
Enabling Acts: Higher Education Reauthorization Act 2010

Policy Number: 4.1.2

Policy Owner: Vice President for Student Affairs & Chief Diversity Officer
Responsible Office(s): Office of Student Life Resident Education and Development


The University of Cincinnati maintains campus residence hall facilities and is required by law to establish a policy for missing student notification.


Proactive measures

  1. Each student living in any on-campus housing facility has the right to register a confidential contact person (CCP) to be notified in the event that the student is determined to be missing.
    1. Each student shall be provided a written notice of the availability of CCP registration.
      • Said notice will be communicated via email to the student’s individual UC email account. In addition, the option of this process shall be included on the Student Life web site.
      • These registrations shall be maintained by the lead administrator of the facility where the student lives.
      • Registration information will include the CCP’s full name and phone number.
      • Each student shall be provided the opportunity to register a CCP within 48 hours of keys being issued to the student.
      • If a student wishes to change his/her CCP registration, he or she must make written notice to the lead administrator of the facility where he/she lives.
    2. The process for access to registration information on all CCPs is restricted to designated employees of the university or the manager of the on-campus facility not operated by the university. The information on a CCP shall be accessed only by authorized personnel and released to relevant law enforcement agencies only in furtherance of the missing person investigation.
    3. Procedures for reporting possible missing students shall be posted on the following websites:
      • Resident Education and Development/Housing & Food Services
      • Student Life
      • Public Safety

These reporting procedures will also be included in writing in the following publications or platforms:

  • UC Student Handbook;
  • Right to Know publication;
  • Residence hall handbook;

Reporting missing residents

  1. When a resident of on-campus student housing is believed to be missing, concerned persons should notify any of the following resources:
    1. University of Cincinnati Police Department (UCPD), 556-1111; and
    2. The residence coordinator (RC) or assistant residence coordinator (ARC) where the missing person lives; in University Park apartments these officials are referred to as the community manager or assistant community manager; in Bellevue Gardens the official is the property manager; or
    3. During university business hours, 
      • the Dean of Students Office (513 556-5250); 
      • the Office of Resident Education and Development (RED) (513 556-6476).
  2. Any university employee of the units listed above (or their counterparts in on-campus housing facilities run by other organizations) who receives a report of a missing resident shall immediately contact UCPD at 513 556-1111; notify his/her own immediate supervisor; and document the incident. If UCPD identifies that it does not have jurisdiction based on the circumstances, they shall assist the reporting person(s) in making contact with the appropriate law enforcement jurisdiction. UCPD will notify the Dean of Students Office.

Parental/Confidential Contact Person notification

In the event that a student is reported to be missing, that student’s designated confidential contact person must be contacted within 24 hours. If the student is an unemancipated student under age 18 that student’s parent(s)/guardian also must be contacted within 24 hours. The University of Cincinnati Police Department is the university office designated to make this notification. Such notice may be made in cooperation with the responsible law enforcement jurisdiction, if applicable.


For the purposes of this policy, “on-campus student housing” includes any residential facility for students that is located on an institution’s campus even if the building is owned or maintained by a student organization or another party. Therefore, as of the publication date of this policy, “campus housing facilities” at the University of Cincinnati include the following buildings: Calhoun Hall, Campus Recreation Center (CRC) Hall, Dabney Hall, Daniels Hall, Schneider Hall, Siddall Hall, Turner Hall, the Stratford Heights Complex, University Park Apartments and Bellevue Gardens Apartments.

Related links:

Policy 4.1.1 Student Related Critical Incidents Response Policy

Phone Contacts:

UC Police: 513-556-1111
Dean of Students: 513-556-5250
Resident Education and Development: 513-556-6476

Any person receiving mail and/or packages at the University of Cincinnati should exercise a reasonable degree of caution and examine those materials before opening them. The pages linked below outline characteristics of suspicious packages and what to do in the event you receive one.

Suspicious Packages and Items

Anthrax Threats