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Critical Incident Management/Emergency Communications

Members of Stony Brook's Emergency Management Team have been working with Administration on a review of policies, procedures and programs to respond to and manage critical incidents on campus. The review addresses risk assessment and mental health issues, emergency response, communications technology and other general recommendations.

The following is a summary of the assessment and actions taken to date. Please note that this list is not inclusive of all actions that can and will be done in the future, as this will be a continuous improvement process. 


1. Stony Brook has a Communications Plan for emergency responders using cell phones, pagers, email and portable radios to ensure communications and interoperability with each other and external agencies such as the Suffolk County Police and local fire departments. Emergency information is communicated to the campus community by way of our fire alarm systems, e-mail, web site, campus cable TV system and radio station (WUSB 90.1 FM) and external media sources.

2. Text, Voice and E-mail Messaging: Stony Brook has implemented a mass notification system with a private vendor to provide urgent communications to members of the campus community. Stony Brook University officials can also generate emergency messages by utilizing NY Alert, a similar system developed by the State Emergency Management Office (SEMO).

3. Outdoor Warning Siren: Stony Brook University has installed an outdoor siren alert on the University’s main campus. While some individuals may hear the siren indoors, the siren is designed to be heard OUTDOORS ONLY.

In the event of a true emergency that presents a safety concern, the University will sound the outdoor siren alert, which will last 60-seconds, and the following actions should be taken:

bolt S STOP Stop what you are doing.
bolt O OBSERVE Observe your immediate surroundings for danger.
bolt S SHELTER Seek shelter and additional information.

4. Digital Signage: A software package has been purchased and new digital signage is being planned for installation in large assembly areas in campus buildings. The LCD displays will be centrally controlled with content directed to a particular geographic area.

5. Voice Fire/PA Systems: Fire alarm systems on campus are being upgraded to add additional voice-capable systems and to optimize their voice capability. This will allow us to broadcast an alternate emergency tone and voice message over the speaker system.

6. Campus Safety Website: A new Campus Safety "Staying Safe on Campus" website has been established as a resource for the campus community. The website has links to important emergency, safety, security, health, counseling and other information.

7. An Emergency Command Vehicle (SUV), equipped with communications equipment will be used as a mobile command post at major incidents where University officials will work together in a unified command with external agencies.

Emergency Management and Response

1. Stony Brook University has a comprehensive Emergency Management (All Hazards) Plan that establishes the policy, procedures, and organizational structure to respond, control and recover from emergency situations, using the National Incident Management Training System (NIMS).

2. An Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is used by a team of University Officials, the Incident Commander, and Command Staff to evaluate situations and plan for the effective management of the people, organizations, and resources utilized in response to emergencies.

3. Emergency Responders, including University Police Officers, Fire Marshals, Building Managers, Safety Wardens, and Residential Hall staff respond to and evaluate emergency situations using the Incident Command System (ICS).

4. Critical Incident Plans and Training: Our University Police Department, in partnership with the Suffolk County Police Department (SCPD), has reviewed Critical Incident Response Plans and provided training to all UPD Officers for "active shooting" situations. In addition, UPD Officers have received training on the National Incident Management System (NIMS), Mental Health Disorders, Firearms Training and Incident Response. Table-top exercises are frequently conducted as part of an effort to better prepare our Emergency Responders for an actual event.

5. Fire Safety: Our University Fire Marshals have recently expanded operations to provide fire safety coverage round-the-clock (24/7). Fire Marshals are highly trained for response to fires, fire alarms, hazardous material incidents, technical rescues, and other emergencies. They work closely with local volunteer fire departments which facilitates the response and recovery from emergency situations. A number of fire prevention activities are held annually during the month of September during Campus Fire Safety Month.