What is an Emergency?
An Emergency is an unforeseen event or condition requiring prompt action. Emergencies
at Berkshire Community College can be generally classified as Medical Emergencies,
Fire/Fire Alarm Emergencies, Public Safety Emergencies, and Environment Emergencies.
Emergency conditions either effect an individual, a small group, or the entire college.
In the case they affect the entire College they typically involve the evacuation of
There are many reasons a Campus may have to be evacuated. The most common cause is
due to a fire alarm activations. Other reasons may include, but not limited to, a
bomb threat or environmental condition or a physical threat. Whether you are asked
to evacuate the facility by Security, Administrator, or the fire alarms sounds.
- Stay calm
- Take personal belongings in your immediate vicinity
- Immediately exit the building
- Close doors as you leave
- Proceed directly to emergency assembly areas
- Follow directions you are given by emergency assembly coordinator(s)
Emergency Assistance in an Evacuation
If the fire alarm is sounded, or you are instructed by a college official to leave
the area, evacuate to the nearest parking lot IMMEDIATELY. Close doors behind you.
(Only assist someone with a disability if you can do so without causing personal injury
to yourself or the individual with the disability.)
- Visually Impaired: Ask the person to take your arm and describe the evacuation process
while you move towards safety.
- Mobility Impaired (crutches): If the use of stairs is necessary, ask the person to
use a single crutch so that one hand is free to grasp a handrail, and guide the person
Mobility Impaired (wheelchair): If exits are blocked, move the person to an Area of Rescue Assistance* and wait
for assistance from the evacuation team and/or fire department. Do not remove anyone
from a wheelchair.
Areas of Rescue Assistance
- Susan B. Anthony Center - 1st Floor Deck (off lounge)
- Field Administration - 2nd Floor, East Stairwell (by elevator)
- Jonathan Edwards Library - 1st Floor Deck
- Koussevitzky Arts Center - 2nd Floor Southeast Stairwell
- Koussevitzky Arts Center - 2nd Floor Southwest Stairwell
- Hawthorne Hall - Level 3 Stairwell (by H-321)
- Hawthorne Hall - Level 1 Stairwell (by H-111)
- Melville Hall - Level 4 Stairwell (by M-430)
- Mellville Hall - Level 2 Stairwell (by M-214)
Emergency Drills, Testing and Evacuation Procedures
The purpose of evacuation drills is to prepare building occupants for an organized
evacuation in case of an emergency. At Berkshire Community College, evacuation drills
are used as a way to educate and train students, faculty and staff. During the drill,
students, faculty and staff ‘practice’ drill procedures and familiarize themselves
with the location of exits and the sound of the fire alarm. In addition to education,
the process also provides BCC with the opportunity to test the operation of fire alarm
Evacuation drills are coordinated by the Director of Safety & Security. In all buildings,
emergency exits signs are provided to give guidance on the direction people should
travel when exiting each building for a short-term building evacuation. In academic
buildings, evacuation maps are posted on the wall next to the classroom doors and
in administrative buildings the evacuation maps are located along the corridors. BCC
does not tell individuals in advance about the designated locations for long-term
evacuations because those decisions are affected by time of day, location of the building
being evacuated, the availability of the various designated emergency gathering locations
on campus, and other factors such as the location and nature of the threat. Staff
on the scene will communicate information to individuals regarding the developing
situation or any evacuation status changes. Fire drills are typically scheduled during
the early start of the fall & spring semesters.
BCC conducts announced and unannounced drills and exercises each year and conducts
follow-through activities designed for assessment and evaluation of emergency plans
Emergency Resources & Contacts
For an emergency on campus, dial 9-911 from a classroom phone or 911 from a cell,
then call security at x6100
|Brien Center (Mental Health & Substance Abuse)
|National Suicide Prevention Lifelin
Reporting Crimes & Emergencies
BCC students, faculty and staff as well as visitors are encouraged to immediately
report any incidents of criminal activity, sexual harassment, racist behavior, or
other emergencies to the Massachusetts State Police and Campus Security.
Security officers may be approached at any time or may be contacted in the following
- By calling 413-499-4660, Ext. 6100 which rings to the radio carried by the Security
officers at all times. (It takes several rings for the call to reach BCC security.)
- By using emergency phones located throughout the campus (which automatically dials security upon lifting of the handset).
- If Security officers cannot be reached during normal business hours, incidents can
be reported to the Director of Safety & Security, located in A-18, Ext. 1011; to the
VP for Administration and Finance, located in F-224, Ext. 3002; or to the VP for Student
Affairs and Enrollment Services located in F-123, Ext. 1602.
- Dial 911 for medical emergencies, then follow up with Security officers at Ext. 6100.
Security officers are trained to provide the necessary medical assistance and will
summon Emergency Medical Services if needed.
If you are a victim of a crime and do not want to pursue action within the College
System or the criminal justice system, you may still want to consider making a confidential
report. With your permission, college personnel who receive this report can file details
of the incident without revealing your identity.
Report a crime*
*The purpose of a confidential report is to comply with your wish to keep the matter
confidential, while taking steps to ensure the future safety of yourself and others.
With such information, the College can keep an accurate record of the number on incidents
involving students, determine where there is a pattern of crime with regard to a particular
location, method, or assailant, and alert the campus community to potential danger.
*Reports filed in this manner are counted and disclosed in the annual crimes statistics
for the institution.