Disability Services Emergency Response Procedure

All students are encouraged to be familiar with the University’s general evacuation plan. Suggestions provided below are intended as additional safety precautions for students with disabilities in emergency situations.


  1. Review SFA’s Campus Safety and Emergency Management Plan.

  2. Persons with disabilities who are able to exit a building during a fire or emergency should do so.  Those who can not exit a building safely should go to the nearest exit or preferred area of rescuer to await the arrival of emergency personnel, police, or fire department.

  3. Familiarize yourself with the posted evacuation plan for your housing facility, classroom buildings, cafeteria, student center, library and other campus buildings.

  4. You are encouraged to locate fire exits, doors, stairs and fire extinguishers when you enter buildings for the first time.

  5. While in the library, laboratory areas, etc. for extended periods of time, let someone know where you will be and approximately how long you plan to be there.

  6. When fire alarms sound or flash, exit the building immediately or go to the area of rescue assistance, if one is designated/posted for the building.

  7. Should people not be able to use stairs or exit the building without assistance, a staff person or a student should assist persons with disabilities in getting to a safe place.

  8. Proceed to a safe place away from the incident, in a room with an exterior window and/or near stairs.

  9. Go to a room with a telephone, if at all possible.

  10. Note the room number.

  11. Close the door.

  12. Call 911. A dispatcher in the University Police Department will verify the room number.

  13. If there is not a telephone, close the door and go to the exterior window.

  14. Students with visual impairments should follow regular evacuation procedures. Students who are not thoroughly familiar with the immediate surrounding, should ask another person for guidance to the nearest emergency exit. The person providing assistance should guide the student as they walk, describe the pathway and any obstacles, and orient the student to the surroundings when they have reached a safe place.

  15. Students with hearing impairments may not readily perceive emergency alarms. They could receive emergency communication through a written note stating the emergency and directions to the nearest emergency exit, or by another person flashing the light switch on/off to gain the student’s attention and indicating by gestures or in writing the nature of the emergency and how to proceed.

  16. Students with mobility impairments who are on the ground floor may be able to exit unassisted. Needs and preferences of a person who is non-ambulatory may vary. Note: lifting or transporting by untrained emergency personnel should be considered only in cases of extreme emergency.



  1. Following room assignments at the beginning of each semester, the Residence Life Department will provide the facility supervisor and the University Police Department with a list, which includes name, building and room number, and disability category for each student with a documented disability who receives housing accommodations.

  2. Students who receive housing accommodations and move from one room to another on campus, may be required to pay to have the equipment moved, if applicable (i.e. flashing fire alarm).

  3. At the time that professors are notified of classroom accommodations requested by students with disabilities, the professor is reminded to be aware of the location of the nearest emergency telephone.

  4. Evacuation drills are to be held at least once each semester in all housing facilities.

  5. Individual consideration may be given for changes in this procedure when warranted by need or special request.

  6. All university personnel will assist emergency personnel by identifying the location of persons with disabilities in the event of a fire or emergency. University personnel participate with local emergency response teams to enforce and comply with regulations or ordinances relevant to emergency procedures.

  7. You may contact the Disability Services, Residence Life Department or Environmental Health, Safety, and Risk Management Department to assist you in creating a personalized emergency evacuation plan.  Theses offices can assist you by identifying accessible routes, safety knowledgeable staff, building egresses and areas of rescue for the individual buildings you frequent. 

General evacuation procedures should be followed by all students in addition to the specific suggestions provided in this procedure.

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