Utility Outages

The University Facilities Operations Department has developed and maintains emergency action plans in the event of utility outages. These plans and procedures are designed to address utility failures involving the loss of electrical power, gas, potable water, and loss of communications. The plans include preparations for meeting any serious shortage or complete failure of utilities.

Individual and Group Safety Information

The following are safety suggestions in dealing with a utility outage:

  • All building evacuations will occur when an alarm sounds continuously and/or when an emergency exists.
  • Assist the handicapped in exiting the building! Remember that the elevators are reserved for those with physical disabilities. Do not use elevators in case of fire.
  • Once outside, move to a clear area at least 500 feet away from the affected buildings. Keep walkways, fire lanes and hydrants clear for emergency crews.
  • If requested, assist emergency crews as necessary.
  • A Field Incident Command Post may be set up near the emergency site. Keep clear of the command post unless you have official business.
  • Do not return to an evacuated building affected by the utility loss until told to do so by an appropriate university official.
  • Electrical/Light Failure -- Emergency lighting systems should provide sufficient illumination to exit buildings in an orderly manner.
  • Elevator Failure -- If you are trapped in the elevator, use the emergency phone to directly notify the University Police Department. If the elevator does not have an emergency phone, turn on the emergency alarm to signal for help. Both are located on the elevator's front panel.
  • Plumbing Failure/Flooding-Cease using all electrical equipment. Notify the University Police Department at (203) 392-5375. If necessary, vacate the area.
  • Gas Leak -- Cease all operations. Do not switch on/off lights or any electrical equipment. Remember electrical arcing can trigger an explosion! Notify the University Police Department from a phone away from the gas leak area.
  • Steam Line Failure -- Immediately notify the University Police Department or the Facilities Operations Department. If necessary, vacate the area.
  • Ventilation Problem -- If smoke odors come from the ventilation system, immediately notify the University Police Department or the Facilities Operations Department. If necessary, cease all operations and vacate the area.
  • Notify the program manager responsible for animal safety precautions within any animal-based university research labs. The program manager is responsible for ensuring the continuity of this research and academic programming.