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UT Defines Operational Emergency Terms

Mose Buchele Shooting Pix, 09-28-10 7.jpg
Image by KUT News/Mose Buchele
Police escort University of Texas students to safety during the campus shooting incident on September 28, 2010

In response to feedback about how the University of Texas can better inform students, faculty, and employees about emergency situations, U.T.'s Office of Campus Safety and Security has developed a webpage and will distribute posters that clarifies the definition between “shelter in place” and “lockdown.”

The two terms had been undefined by officials in the past and were being used interchangeably by some media outlets after the September 28, 2010 shooting incident at the university's Perry-Castaneda Library.

“'Shelter in place' is typically used for the weather situations and maybe an environmental, like a chemical spill, that kind of thing,” Rhonda Weldon, Director of Communications for U.T. operations, told KUT. “The word 'lockdown' is something that we want to cue building managers to take action on.”  

The posters that Weldon says will be distributed around campus will list the 5 outs:

  • To get out if it’s possible
  • To call out, call UTPD or 911
  • To keep out of the building
  • To hide out if you can’t get out of the building
  • To take out the assailant if you don’t have any other options left to you

Weldon says that the 5 outs give proper protocol in the event of a future lockdown situation, including what to do if the threat is inside the same building you are in.
Click here to see the posters and to learn more about the updated campus  safety protocol terminology.