Personal Safety Guidelines

Active Shooter/Hostile Intruder

Department of Homeland Security Active Shooter Guidelines

When reporting an incident involving a firearm or shots fired:

  • Call Public Safety at Ext. 6320, if using a campus phone, or (718) 631-6320 and/or 9-1-1 immediately.
  • Provide your name, location and telephone number.
  • Explain the situation in detail, including any known injuries.
  • Describe shooter(s) to dispatchers.
  • Provide last known location of shooter(s).

If shooter is inside and you cannot escape:

  • Take shelter in a classroom or office, if possible; then close and lock your door.
  • Close and lock windows and close blinds or curtains.
  • Stay away from windows.
  • Turn off lights and audio equipment.
  • Stay out of open areas and out of view.
  • Try to remain calm and be very quiet and listen.
  • If you are caught in an open area such as a hallway or lounge you can try to hide.
  • If you decide that you can safely escape the building by running, do not move in a straight line, but in a zigzag fashion attempting to keep objects such as desks, cabinets etc. between you and the hostile intruder.
  • If you are unable to hide or run and if there are multiple victims you may choose to "Play Dead".
  • If you cannot hide or escape your last option might be to fight back. This is dangerous, but depending on your situation, might be your last alternative.

If outside:

  • Run away from the threat if you can, as fast as you can.
  • Do not run in a straight line.
  • Use vehicles, bushes, trees and anything that could act as cover and block you from the view of the hostile person.

If possible, try to get a description of the shooter(s) including:

  • Complexion
  • Hair color
  • Height and weight
  • Gender
  • General build
  • Facial hair
  • Markings, such as tattoos, piercings and scars
  • Shirt color
  • Pants color
  • Hat
  • Shoes

If possible, try to get a description of the weapon(s) and answer these questions:

  • How many weapons do/did you see?
  • What type of weapons do you see?
  • How many shots did you hear?
  • Is the shooter carrying ammunition?
  • Has the shooter made any statements?

Physical Violence/Criminal Activity

When reporting any incident involving a confrontation, fight, physical violence or suspected criminal activity:

  • Provide your name, location and telephone number.
  • Explain the situation to the Public Safety Dispatcher.
  • Provide information on any known injuries.

Pay close attention to details, and try to determine the answers to these questions:

  • How many people are involved?
  • Do you see any weapons?
  • Do you know any of the participants?
  • Is anyone running away from the scene? In what direction?
  • Entering a vehicle?
    • Color?
    • Make/Model?
    • License plate number?
    • Are there any passengers in the vehicle?
    • In which direction is the vehicle traveling?

Describe the participants by noting:

  • Hair color
  • Complexion
  • Height, weight
  • Gender
  • General build
  • Facial hair
  • Markings, such as tattoos, piercings, scars
  • Shirt color
  • Pants color
  • Shoes and hat description

Remember that weapons may be involved!

  • If it can be accomplished safely, guide bystanders away from possible danger, but do not attempt to intervene or mediate with parties involved in an altercation or suspected criminal activity.

Campus Security Escort

Upon request, the Department of Public Safety's Escort Service will provide an officer to accompany members of the college community when traveling from one campus location to another (e.g. from an office or classroom in the Humanities Building to the bus stop on campus) for a greater sense of security.

Contact the Department of Public Safety at Ext. 6320 or (718) 631-6320 to request an escort. Escort Services is only available during campus hours.

Bomb Threats

When reporting a bomb threat:

  • Provide your name, location and telephone number.
  • Tell the Public Safety Dispatcher exactly what the caller said.

If you receive a bomb threat do the following:

  • Keep the caller on the phone as long as possible.
  • Write down as much information as possible; do not rely solely on memory.
  • Ask: "When is the bomb going to explode?"
  • Ask: "Where is the bomb located?"
  • Ask: "What does the bomb look like?"
  • Ask: "What will cause the bomb to explode?"
  • Ask: "Did you place the bomb?"
  • Ask: "How many bombs were placed?"
  • Ask: "What is your address?"
  • Ask: "What is your name?"

Be perceptive and take detailed notes. Listen for and try to detect:

  • age of caller
  • gender of caller
  • race of caller
  • any unusual voice or speech characteristics
  • exact wording of threat
  • background noises
  • language ability of caller

If an EVACUATION is ordered, follow the directions of Public Safety and Police personnel.

STAY ALERT! Report any suspicious or unusual items: Some bombers may leave explosive devices in the evacuation path.

Person(s) Trapped in Elevator

When trapped in an elevator:

  • Press alarm button and remain calm.
  • Press Red Call Button and speak clearly into intercom.
  • Give the location of the elevator, i.e., building and floor. When known, give the number of people trapped. Report any injuries/medical conditions.
  • Report any noises or occurrences that happened before the event.
  • Do not attempt to exit the elevator if doors should open between floors.

When reporting person(s) trapped in elevator, call Public Safety at Ext. 6320 or (718) 631-6320 and provide the information above.

Be prepared:

  • For each elevator you ride, locate the STOP button and the Emergency Call button.

Behavioral Concerns

When reporting a psychological crisis/suicide attempt, threat or any other behavioral concern:

  • Provide your name, location and telephone number.
  • Explain the situation in detail to the Public Safety Dispatcher.
  • Indicate if the person is armed and, if so, describe the weapon.


  • Try not to leave the person unattended – but only if you do not feel that you are in any danger.
  • Take all references to suicide seriously. Doing otherwise might prove deadly.
  • Do your best to make the person feel safe until trained personnel have arrived.
  • Try not to act shocked.
  • Keep your own safety in mind at all times.
  • Keep the telephone number to the Counseling Office, Ext. 6370 or (718) 631-6370, readily available.

Medical Emergencies

When reporting a medical emergency:

  • Call the Public Safety Dispatcher and state: "This is a medical emergency".
  • Be prepared to provide the following:
    • Location of the emergency
    • The number from which you are calling.
    • Type of medical emergency.
    • Answers to the following questions:
      • Is the victim conscious?
      • Is the victim breathing?
      • Is there severe bleeding?
      • How many victims are involved?


  • Do not hang up until instructed to do so by the Public Safety dispatcher.
  • Do not move the victim unless he or she is in imminent danger.
  • Assign someone to escort emergency personnel to the victim’s location.
  • Do not give the victim anything to eat or drink.
  • Try to keep the victim calm and assure him or her that help is on the way.
  • Comply with all instructions given by emergency response personnel.

Campus Cultural Centers

Kupferberg Holocaust Center exterior lit up at nightOpens in a new window
Kupferberg Holocaust Center Opens in a new window

The KHC uses the lessons of the Holocaust to educate current and future generations about the ramifications of unbridled prejudice, racism and stereotyping.

Russian Ballet performing at the Queensborough Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window
QPAC: Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window

QPAC is an invaluable entertainment company in this region with a growing national reputation. The arts at QPAC continues to play a vital role in transforming lives and building stronger communities.

Queensborough Art Gallery exterior in the afternoonOpens in a new window
QCC Art Gallery

The QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York is a vital educational and cultural resource for Queensborough Community College, the Borough of Queens and the surrounding communities.