Department of Emergency Management


Key Campus Contacts

Emergency: 911
University Police
Non-Emergencies: 805-756-2281

Information Sources

Cal Poly Emergency Information Call Center*


Emergency Alert System*

920 AM, 1400 AM, 98.1 FM, 1610 AM (Cal Poly)


* only activated during emergencies

Additional Information

Content is Maintained by Department of Emergency Management

Phone: 805-756-6658


Am I required to work during a disaster?

All persons employed by the state or any state agency, excluding aliens legally employed, are designated as disaster service workers. Therefore, they are subject to such disaster service activities as may be assigned to them by their superiors or by law.

The major bodies of law discussing the rules and obligations of Disaster Service Workers are the following:

  • Chapter 8, Division 4, Title 1 of the Government Code (§3100 et. seq.)
  • Chapter 7, Division 1, Title 2 of the Government Code (§8550 et seq.)
  • Chapter 10, Part 1, Division 4 of the Labor Code (§4351 et seq.)

If I am called upon to work during a disaster, am I liable for my work as a disaster service worker?

Disaster service workers who perform disaster services during a declared state of emergency are immune from civil liability of injury to person or property except if the act is willful.

What is the EOC?

The EOC is the Emergency Operations Center. It is the coordination center of campuswide efforts in a disaster. It is located in the Old Fire House (Building 74) at University Police and will be staffed with Emergency Managers. The EOC is not open to the public.

How does someone know to leave their workstation and where to go?

If you hear the evacuation alarm (fire alarm), if the conditions in the building appear to warrant it , or your supervisor instructs you, evacuate the building immediately. Go directly to your designated outdoor assembly area and report to the Building Coordinator for your group. Do not go home without approval from management and, if approved, check in with your Building Coordinator before leaving.

How does someone know to return to their workstation?

Authorized personnel will notify you when it is safe to return to your area.

How does someone find out the status of the campus if an emergency happens and they are away?

Current status of the campus will be available on the University Police Newsline at 805-756-NEWS (6397).

Information sources available during catastrophic emergencies include:

Some rooms are designated as "radiation shelters." What does that mean?

These designations are an artifact of the old Civil Defense program for protection from fallout from a nuclear detonation. The signs that are still in place are in the process of being removed. Special shelters aren't necessary for nuclear plant emergency planning since the hazards are different from those of bomb fallout.

What is Shelter-in-place?

Shelter-in-place is an immediate short term strategy to use in a disaster or dangerous situation.  Staying inside a building may be the best protective action during a manmade or natural critical incident.

When can shelter-in-place be used?

For many possible situations, some of the most common are:

  • Shooting Incident (Follow “ALICE” instructions)
  • Civil unrest or riot
  • Hazardous materials release (accidental or intentional)
    • Chemical or biological
    • Radiological (i.e., Diablo Canyon)
  • Inclement weather (i.e., Storm or Flood)

How will I know to shelter-in-place?

University Policy or Campus Administration will advise when to shelter-in-place.  This can be done by or in a combination of the following forms.

  • Personal observation or message received that a dangerous situation is imminent
  • PolyAlert System – text message and/or email notification
  • Campuswide Emergency Broadcast/Public Address System (PA or “Big Voice”)
  • Campuswide Digital Signage
  • Campus Phone Alert System notification

How do I shelter-in-place?

Situations vary but some common things to do are:

  • Get into or stay inside a building, move to an interior room away from windows;
  • Lock and/or barricade doors and cover windows if possible;
  • Silence electronic devices; do not use your phone except for emergency 9-1-1 calls.
  • Follow instructions of emergency personnel; and
  • Wait until the threat has ended and authorities give an “all-clear” and do not leave the area until notified to do so and in a manner directed by emergency personnel.

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