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Emergency Management Program

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Policy 302.1

1 Introduction

1.1 Appalachian State University is committed to the safety of faculty, staff, students, and visitors. Such commitment requires a comprehensive emergency management program. This policy provides authority for an emergency management program at Appalachian State University and outlines requirements for emergency management plans, policies, and procedures.

2 Scope

2.1 This policy applies to the university-wide Emergency Management Program to include all faculty, staff, students, visitors, guests, sub-contractors, vendors, and university property within the territorial limits of the university.

3 Definitions

3.1 Business Unit

Any academic or administrative department, unit, center, institute, division, or college.

3.2 Continuity of Operations

Capability to continue essential program functions and to preserve essential processes and functions, positions, lines of succession, applications and records, communications, and facilities across a broad range of potential emergencies/disasters.

3.3 Critical Functions

Functions or services offered that if interrupted or unavailable for several business days would significantly jeopardize the university's ability to serve its students and the campus community.

3.4 Disaster

A severe or prolonged emergency that threatens life, personal safety, property, environment and/or critical infrastructure, systems or processes.

3.5 Emergency

An incident, human-caused, natural, or technological, that requires responsive action to protect life, personal safety, property, and/or the environment.

3.6 Incident

Any occurrence, natural or human-caused, that requires action by the Emergency Management Program.

4 Policy Statements

4.1 Program Organization

4.1.1 The Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management Office is responsible for Emergency Management. This responsibility includes coordinating activities and programs related to emergency and disaster prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery for the university. This office is also responsible for coordinating with outside entities as needed to prepare for or respond to emergencies.

4.1.2 The Emergency Management Program shall consist of the following:

(a) An office of emergency management led by the director of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management.
(b) An Emergency Operations Center (EOC), created as a central location out of which to manage emergency operations.
(c) A Crisis Policy Group (CPG), responsible for strategic policy and recovery efforts. The CPG exists under the direction of the Chancellor and is comprised of members of the Chancellor’s executive staff.
(d) An Emergency Management Task Force (EMTF), responsible for staffing the EOC and exercising operational decision-making authority for Business Units during an emergency. The EMTF shall have the authority to assign university resources, make operational decisions and coordinate with external emergency support agencies. The EMTF will serve as an advisory body to the director of the university’s emergency management program.

4.1.3 Departments assigned an emergency response or recovery role shall coordinate with the Office of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management.

4.2 Responsibilities of the Director

4.2.1 The director shall be responsible for the organization, administration, and operation of the emergency management program. The director shall be authorized to mandate health and safety requirements recommended or required by executive order, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state or local public health officials, or in accordance with the University's Emergency Operations Plan, without the need for the adoption of additional specific written policies during the pendency of the emergency. Any failure to comply with these mandates shall result in disciplinary action.

4.2.2 The director's duties and responsibilities shall include, but are not be limited to, the following:

(a) Management of the university-wide comprehensive emergency management program.
(b) Coordinating with all public and private agencies engaged in emergency management within the university.
(c) Educating the campus community as to actions necessary and required in the event of an emergency or disaster.
(d) Planning and conducting exercises to enhance emergency preparedness and to familiarize Business Units with emergency management plans, procedures, and operations.
(e) Monitoring and advising the executive staff of threats, hazards, emergencies, or disasters that pose a risk to the safety of students, faculty, and staff, or university interests.
(f) Managing the university EOC.
(g) Coordinating and documenting after-action reviews following the activation of a campus emergency operations plan or emergency management program once the incident or event has concluded.
(h) Preparing program reports as deemed necessary by senior university administration.
(i) Establishing and overseeing a university emergency management advisory committee to provide input and assistance with matters related to preparing, implementing, and evaluating the university emergency management program.

4.3 Responsibilities of the Emergency Management Task Force

4.3.1 The EMTF will be chaired by the Director of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management, who will determine appropriate committee representation.

4.3.2 The EMTF will meet on at least a quarterly basis to discuss and evaluate the emergency management program.

4.3.3 The EMTF will be responsible for ensuring appropriate written plans are developed and maintained to support the Appalachian State University Emergency Operations Plan. Plans shall be coordinated with the Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management Office.

4.3.4 The EMTF will convene following the conclusion of any activation of the University’s Emergency Operations Plan to review response efforts and provide recommendations for future plan improvements.

5 University Emergency Management Plans

5.1 University Emergency Operations Plan

5.1.1 A university-wide Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) shall be adopted and maintained. This plan shall be developed with the support of the EMTF and approved by the Chancellor.

5.1.2 Following approval of the EOP, each Business Unit listed therein will be provided notice of the EOP and must maintain a state of readiness to respond effectively, and perform all functions assigned to it.

5.1.3 The plan shall be updated at least once every three years, with interim revisions taking place as necessary.

5.2 Other Emergency Management Plans

5.2.1 Additional emergency management plans, separate from the EOP, shall be maintained by the Office of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management to ensure coordinated activities within the mission areas of emergency management: prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery.

5.2.2 In the preparation of these emergency management plans, the services, equipment, facilities, and personnel of all Business Units shall be utilized as appropriate. Each Business Unit listed within these plans shall formulate internal implementation processes and train staff to perform the functions within the plan.

5.3 Continuity Plans

5.3.1 Each Business Unit that is determined by the university to provide essential functions shall develop and maintain a Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP). This plan exists to ensure a high probability of restoration of essential functions following an incident or event.

5.3.2 Each Business Unit requiring a COOP shall designate an individual to serve as their continuity program manager.

5.3.3 Plans shall adhere to the format provided by the Office of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management.

5.3.4 Plans shall be updated annually and submitted to the Office of Environmental Health, Safety, and Emergency Management for review.

6 Additional References

7 Authority

8 Contact Information

Environmental Health, Safety and Emergency Management (828.262.4008)

9 Original Effective Date

June 18, 2003

10 Revision Dates

July 15, 2019
October 18, 2021