Tornado Emergency Plan Updated

Tornado Emergency Plan Updated

June 6, 2016

If a tornado warning were issued during your work hours, would you know what to do, where to go, or how to alert other employees who may not know about the warning? These questions were among many others recently asked by a handful of employees from across GUC. This team of employees worked with Risk and Safety staff to update sections of the Emergency Management Plan that cover tornado watches and warnings. We encourage you to visit MyGUC and become familiar with the updated sections (3.4 and 3.9). The plan, along with updated emergency maps, is located on the Safety Portal.

In the meantime, here are some of the key takeaways from the updated plan:

Phone, Radio, Text Alerts — One of the updates to the tornado plan includes phone, radio all-calls, and text message alerts that will be sent out to all affected employees in the event that the National Weather Service (NWS) issues a tornado warning. Our office phones are equipped with the ability to deliver phone messages through the speaker of our phones. Alerts will go to all phones in break rooms, meeting rooms, and supervisor offices in an effort to reach office staff. Radio all-calls and text message alerts will warn employees out in the field. Once notified, employees will take immediate action and move toward the nearest shelter-in-place location. Safety Specialist Kelly Smith has started communicating with employees during monthly safety meetings about what type of action to take once a shelter-in-place alert has been issued. For example, employees who are working with customers at the time of an alert must invite customers to take shelter with employees.

Maps — All of GUC's evacuation maps have been updated to include shelter-in-place locations. Employees are encouraged to become familiar with the maps in all of the facilities and buildings where they work. (See example on left where shelter-in-place locations are marked with green lines.)

Drills — We will start conducting tornado drills to help us prepare for what to do in the event of an alert. During the drills, employees who have been trained as "sweepers" will walk around and help others find the closest shelter-in-place locations.
Emergency Information Card — We designed this card to help everyone remember important phone numbers and actions to take in the event of a tornado warning and other emergencies. Example, if you happen to spot a tornado, you're encouraged to report it by calling 329-2288. This way, an alert can be sent to all affected employees. These cards are being handed out during safety meetings.