Evacuation Procedure

Fires, explosions, bomb threats and chemical spills are among the occurrences that may require emergency evacuation of university facilities. Continuous sound and flashing of fire alarm horns and strobes in any university owned, leased or operated facility is the evacuation signal. Everyone who is alerted by this alarm is required to evacuate the facility as quickly and as calmly as possible.


The university requires that all facility occupants respond to the alarm signal by immediately initiating the evacuation procedures outlined below:

  1. Stop all activities immediately. Complete the internal departmental or class procedures that have been determined to be essential prior to emergency evacuation.
  2. Assess that all persons can evacuate the area. Department safety wardens, supervisors, laboratory managers and instructors are required to assure that everyone, including individuals with mobility limitations, have evacuated their area. Note: Evacuation plans for persons with disabilities must be made part of each department's documented emergency evacuation procedures.
  3. Follow EXIT signs to the nearest safe exit. Do not use elevators! Special care should be taken with some footwear, such as clogs, that could hamper rapid and safe descent.
  4. Use the stairs. Never use the elevator. Walk briskly, but do not run. Stay on the right in order to allow emergency response personnel clear access up the stairs, along the left side.
  5. Allow others to enter the stairwell. As you approach the landing of each floor, allow evacuees from that level to enter the stairwell.
  6. Steer clear of hazards. If evacuation becomes difficult via a chosen route, because of smoke, flames or blockage, re-enter the facility on a safe floor. Continue evacuation via the nearest safe exit route.
  7. Move away from the building. Once you have exited the facility, move at least 150 ft. away from the building and exit doors. Proceed to your Evacuation Assembly Area.
  8. Do not re-enter the building without an “all clear”. Do not, under any circumstances, re-enter the facility unless authorized by a FIU Police Officer, fire department personnel or until a recognized university authority broadcasts the "all clear" message.

In facilities without alarm systems, all persons must leave whenever it becomes clear that an emergency exists which necessitates evacuation for the protection safety and well-being of the occupants.

No one is expected to endanger him/herself in order to control a hazard or to effect or assist with evacuation of others, but everyone has a duty to ensure that other occupants are aware of an emergency.

Similarly, it is expected that individuals will aid anyone who requires physical assistance to safely evacuate. ​

False Fire Alarms

Fire alarms are a life safety system and should only be activated in the event of a fire. Therefore, FIU will pursue all available legal actions (F.S. 806.101) against anyone who willfully creates a false alarm of fire.

F.S. 806.101 - False Alarms of Fire - Whoever, without reasonable cause, by outcry or the ringing of bells, or otherwise, makes or circulates, or causes to be made or circulated, a false alarm of fire, shall for the first conviction be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided under s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. A second or subsequent conviction under this section shall constitute a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.083 or 2. 775.084.

Persons with Disabilities       

At the time an emergency occurs assistance may not be readily available if no prior arrangements are made since persons with disabilities may not be readily identifiable to others. Therefore, persons with disabilities who may require assistance must to request/arrange for assistance ahead of time.

Arrangements for assistance are usually best accomplished by establishing a personal relationship between the individual requiring assistance and one or more of his/her peers in the form of a "Buddy Plan".  Redundant arrangements should be made to ensure that assistance would be available even when the designated "buddies" are unavailable.

Make the necessary arrangements with the Disability Resource Center, Office of Equal Opportunity Programs and Diversity, co-workers ("buddies") and/or the FIU Police Department as is appropriate to facilitate an evacuation plan at the time of an emergency.

Evacuation Assistance


FIU Police Officers are trained in the use of the Evacu-trac device and are able to provide evacuation assistance for persons with mobility impairments, at the time of an emergency.

Contact EH&S for assistance with "Buddy Plans" that entail the use of an Evacu-trac devices.

Evacu-trac Instructions

Other Assistance

The emergency evacuation alarm systems in most university facilities include visual and audible signaling devices that alert the sight or hearing impaired persons to alarm conditions.

Stairwells and Safe Refuge Areas

The stairway landings on each floor of most buildings on university premises are independently accessible by wheelchair users, and are large enough to accommodate at least one wheelchair occupant and still remain a viable means of emergency exit for others.  While not all stairways fully qualify as "areas of safe refuge​" as defined by code, they are usually substantially safer than any other areas of the building and much preferable to remaining in an area where exposure to heat, smoke, and products of combustion are a hazard.

Rescue personnel should be made aware of anyone needing assistance by other occupants who have evacuated. Persons waiting in a stairwell should be sure to ask several persons to notify FIU Police of their location to advise.  When making this request, give the name of the stairwell and the floor (example: PC northwest stairs, 4th floor landing).

Areas of refuge in specific university buildings have the benefit of two-way communication devices located in close proximity to the protected area within the stairways.  The communication devices connect to the FIU Police Department and allow the individual to advise the FIU Police Dispatcher of their location.

Emergency Contact

Call FIU Police Department before you call fire rescue. The emergency line is open 24 Hours – 7 Days a Week:

  • MMC: 305-348-5911
  • BBC: 305-919-5911
  • Relay Service: 711