Sheltering in Place-Environmental Health & Safety - Carnegie Mellon University

Sheltering in Place

Sheltering in place means staying where you are, and keeping others from leaving the area. If an order to shelter in place is given:

  • Stop classes or work. Close business operations.
  • Everyone, including building visitors, must stay in the building. Do not try to get back to your normal location if you are in another building.
  • Close blinds and drapes.
  • Eliminate potential sources of ignition (e.g., flammable vapors).
  • You may be asked to lock all windows, exterior doors, and any other openings to the outside, depending on the emergency. Cracks around doors and windows may need to be sealed.
  • Stay away from windows or objects that could become projectiles in a severe weather event.
  • Gather essential disaster supplies if possible.
  • Get to an interior room(s) with the fewest windows or vents. These rooms should be selected in advance. If possible, select rooms with hard-wired telephones.
  • You may be instructed to turn off local ventilation (fans, window air conditioners, fume hoods). Learn where and how to shut these off ahead of time.
  • Labs should prepare for an orderly shutdown of experiments in the event that such action should become necessary. Procedures should be developed in advance.
  • Keep listening to the radio or television until you are told all is safe or you are told to evacuate.