Saddleback College Emergency Procedures

We are shocked and very deeply saddened about today’s shooting rampage that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CN.  Our condolences and prayers go out to the families and friends of the 20 children and 7 adults who were mercilessly killed.  This past week, a graduate student was shot and killed after a violent encounter with three uniformed police officers at California State University, San Bernardino and on Wednesday a lock down occurred at California State University, Fullerton due to a report of armed suspects being on campus.

We would like to take this opportunity to let the entire Saddleback community know that your safety is our number one priority.  As such, we are sharing with you some important safety and emergency procedures and actions you should follow if a similar incident ever were to happen on our campus.

EMERGENCY PHONE CONTACT NUMBERS

Campus Police (949) 582-4444 (dial 4444 from on-campus phones)

Campus Police (non-emergencies) (949) 582-4585

Orange County Sheriff/Fire/Paramedic 911 (dial 9 + 911 from on-campus phones)

Note:  when calling about an emergency on campus, please immediately provide operator with college address (28000 Marguerite Parkway, Mission Viejo) and location on campus.

CAMPUS WIDE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION.  Saddleback uses InformaCast Alert software that provides our campus police with the means to handle emergency communications from one central, secure, and easy to use interface with SMS messaging and prerecorded messages.  This system is tested periodically and most recently at our college’s California Great Shakeout exercise in October.  This system was successfully used during the 2007 wild fires and Laguna Canyon fire in 1993.

ACTIVE SHOOTER PROFILES.  There is not a typical “profile” of a school shooter.  Each of the assailants that carried out previous attacks differed from one another in numerous ways. School shootings are rarely impulsive acts.  They are usually well thought out and planned in advance.  Many of the assailants experienced a significant personal loss in the months leading up to the attack, such as a death, breakup, or divorce in their families.  Many assailants engaged in repetitive viewing of violent media and were often fascinated with previous school shootings. Repeated viewing of movies depicting school shootings, such as “Zero Day” and “Elephant,” may indicate a fascination with campus attacks. Be aware of people’s online videos, blogs, and social networking activities for possible signs of distress.

CAMPUS LOCKDOWNS.  If an emergency occurs that requires our campus to be locked down, no one should leave their position of safety.  Classroom doors should be locked and if the door cannot be locked, use tables and chairs to barricade the door.  Students should be instructed to remain quiet, get down low, and sit out of view of all windows and doors.

ACTIVE SHOOTER CLASSROOM SAFETY TIPS

  • Call 911 and stay on the phone.
  • Meet law enforcement if possible.
  • Isolate and evacuate as soon as possible.
  • Collect as much information as possible.
  • Don’t try to be a hero.
  • Allow police first responders to make contact.

SADDLEBACK COLLEGE POLICE DEPARTMENT.  Our Saddleback Campus Police is staffed by fully-sworn peace officers, trained and regulated by standards established by the California Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission(P.O.S.T.).  Our campus police officers have the same authority as a municipal police officer or county deputy sheriff and they are equipped and trained to respond to similar incidents.  Saddleback and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department have a memorandum of understanding that establishes procedures for how to respond to acts of violence taking place on our campus and our campus police frequently work with them conducting joint training sessions.  Please take the opportunity to review our campus police website at http://www.saddleback.edu/police for additional emergency planning and preparation information.

Saddleback and our campus police are continuing to work on ways to improve the safety and preparedness of our college community.  Over the coming months, we will be providing training opportunities for all employees and updating our emergency operations plans.  If you have any questions or comments, or would like to volunteer to serve on one of our emergency planning and preparedness teams, please contact Chief Chris Wilkinson at cwilkinson@saddleback.edu or Deputy Chief Jim Pyle at jpyle@saddleback.edu.  Both also can be reached at (949) 582-4444.

Thank you for making a personal commitment to being prepared for dealing with possible emergencies.  As stated previously, the safety of our students and employees is our number one priority, and your efforts will help ensure that we are well prepared to respond to any emergency on campus.