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What do I do in the Event of a Hostile Intruder?

In the event that a person threatens the personal safety of members of our college community, the Department of Public Safety would like you to be aware of the guidelines for hostile intruder situations.

This guide cannot cover every possible situation that might occur, but it is a tool that can reduce the number of injuries or deaths if put into action as soon as an intruder situation develops. This is the most important factor in the optimal management of these types of situations.

Hostile Intruder in a Campus Building

When a hostile person is actively causing death or serious bodily injury or the threat of imminent death or seriously bodily injury to a person within a building, we recommend the following procedures be implemented.

  • Faculty should immediately lock the students and themselves in the classroom. If possible, cover any windows or openings that have a direct line of sight into the hallway.
  • If communication is available, call extension 2222, Public Safety, and/or 911.
  • Do not sound the fire alarm. A fire alarm would signal the occupants to evacuate the building and thus place them in potential harm as they attempt to exit.
  • Lock the windows and close blinds or curtains.
  • Stay away from the windows.
  • Turn off lights and all audio equipment.
  • Try to remain as calm as possible.
  • Keep everyone together.
  • Keep classrooms secure until Public Safety and/or police arrive and give you further instructions.
  • If you are not in a classroom, try to get to a classroom or an office.
  • Stay out of open areas and be as quiet as possible.
  • If for some reason you are caught in an open area such as a hallway or lounge, you must decide what you are going to do. This is a very critical time and it can possibly mean life or death.

Hostile Intruder on the grounds of the Campus

When a hostile person is actively causing death or serious physical injury or the threat of imminent death or serious physical injury to persons on the grounds of York College, we recommend the following procedures be implemented.

  • Run away from the threat if you can, as fast as you can.
  • Do not run in a straight line.
  • Use vehicles, bushes, trees and anything that could possibly block you from the view of the hostile person while you are running.
  • If you can get away from the immediate area of danger, summon help and warn others.
  • If you decide to hide, take into consideration the area in which you are hiding.  Will I be found here? Is this really a good spot to remain hidden?
  • If the person is causing death or serious injury to others and you are unable to run or hide you may choose to play dead if other victims are around you.
  • The last option you have if caught in an open area outside may be to fight back.  This is dangerous, but depending on your situation, this could be your last option.
  • If you are caught by the intruder and you are not going to fight back, do not look the intruder in the eyes and obey all commands.
  • Once Public Safety and/or police arrive obey all commands.  They may involve your being handcuffed or made to put your hands in the air.  This is done for safety reasons and once circumstances are evaluated by Public Safety and/or police they will give you further instructions.