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Rice University Research Policy No. 105-02



The University has prepared an Emergency Management Plan to provide direction to faculty, staff and students in the event of a potential or actual emergency. The Plan consists of three principal elements: planning for, managing, and recovering from an emergency situation. All Vice Presidents and Deans have copies of the emergency plan.

The purpose of emergency planning is to ensure proper effort by all areas of the University and to protect life and property of the Rice community, to keep lines of communication open to all areas of the community, and to define responsibilities of essential personnel in the event of a man-made or natural emergency.

The President of Rice University activates elements of an appropriate emergency plan. Implementation of any phase of the emergency plan is an administrative decision made by the President of the University. In the absence of the President, the Assistant to the President shall act in his or her stead. Declarations by the National Weather Service or civil authorities do not automatically activate any part of the University's Emergency Plan. Faculty, staff and students should not take it upon themselves to assume that they are to begin implementing part of the Plan prior to administrative action.

The Office of Public Affairs will coordinate and issue all public and news announcements regarding any emergency situation. The official spokesperson for the University will be the Vice President for Public Affairs.

At the discretion of the President, the Emergency Planning Team may be assembled to prepare plans or direct preparations for emergencies. The Emergency Planning Team has the responsibility for formulating plans and recommending actions that will minimize the effects of a disaster far in advance of an actual emergency.

The principal activities of this planning team will be suspended during an actual emergency. During an emergency, responsibility for implementing policy and procedures shifts to the Emergency Management Team including initial emergency recovery.

The responsibility for developing and implementing individual School, College, Division and Department planning rests with the organization head. To ensure continuity with the University's overall plan and to avoid conflicting policy or directives, emergency plans at these levels must be submitted to the Emergency Planning Team for concurrence.

All Department managers and supervisors with individual action plans are responsible for their reviewing the procedures frequently. All employees in departments with individual action plans are required to know their respective roles and responsibilities during an emergency.

In the case of severe weather alerts issued by the National Weather Service, the University will react appropriately to all weather alerts. A weather watch is a first alert by the National Weather Service that a weather system poses a possible threat to our area. If a weather warning follows, the National Weather Service will issue instructions for the community and the University will react accordingly.

A disaster or emergency of any nature may cause all or part of the Rice University facilities to suspend normal operations.

During periods of suspended or partially suspended activities, University employees are required to report for normal duty unless specifically informed otherwise.

When an Emergency Operations Center is activated at the direction of the President, it will be the command center from which all directives originate. The location of the Emergency Operations Center will depend on the nature of the emergency and/or the physical condition of University structures. When possible, the Emergency Operations Center will be located in 1) the President's and Provost's office suites on the second floor of Lovett Hall; or 2) the Founder's Room on the second floor of Lovett Hall; or 3) in the Vice President for Finance and Administration's office suite on the fourth floor of Allen Center.

Policy No. 105
Issued: November 1, 1996
Revised: September 3, 2002