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The Graduate Health & Life Sciences Research Library at Georgetown University Medical Center

Emergency Preparedness and Response Resources

Emergency Contact Phone Numbers

  • Georgetown University Facilities: (202) 687-3432
  • Georgetown University Police Department: (202) 687.4343
  • Georgetown Emergency Response Medical Service (GERMS): (202) 687.HELP or 687.4357
  • Inclement weather: (202) 687.7669 (SNOW) 
  • Mental Health Emergencies: (202) 687.6985
    • For mental health emergencies after hours, call 202-687-6985, through which a menu of options can direct you to our emergency consultation line.

Emergency Prep @ DML

These emergency plans and procedures have been developed to help DML staff in the event of an emergency that may threaten the safety of the public, staff, or Library building. In all cases, staff are expected to use their best judgment in dealing with emergencies and to summon assistance from the Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD) or Georgetown Emergency Response Medical Service (GERMS) whenever there is any indication it might be needed.


An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a computerized medical device that can check a person’s heart rhythm and recognizes a cardiac rhythm that requires an electrical shock. AEDs use voice prompts, lights, and text to tell the rescuer what steps to take.

Georgetown University has placed AEDs in strategic locations on both the main and medical campuses. AEDs are tested on a regular basis to ensure they are ready to use when they are needed. A map of AEDs located on Georgetown’s main and medical campuses can be found at the bottom of this page.

All GERMS personnel and GUPD officers are trained to use these devices. GERMS also maintains AEDs in each of its ambulances.

The Georgetown University AED Program is registered with the DC Fire & EMS Department in accordance with the “DC Public Access to Automatic External Defibrillator Act of 2000.” The locations of the AEDs can be found in this link:


Bomb Threat

• Remain calm. Keep the caller on the line for as long as possible. DO NOT HANG UP, even if the caller does.
• Listen carefully. Be polite and show interest.
• Try to keep the caller talking to learn more information.
• If possible, write a note to a colleague to notify emergency personnel or, as soon as the caller hangs up, immediately notify
them yourself.
• If your phone has a display, copy the number and/or letters on the window display.
• Complete the Bomb Threat Phone Call Description form (
as soon as possible. Write down as much detail as you can remember. Try to get exact words.

• Main/Medical Campus Dial: (202) 687-4343
• SCS Campus Dial: (202) 784-7375

Handle any handwritten note as minimally as possible and do not delete any emails!

Dangerous Behavior

  • If you see another library patron exhibiting dangerous behavior, inform the DML’s IS Desk and they will call GUPD from a safe and secure space if possible.
  • Do not stay alone in any dangerous situation. Please follow the buddy system if possible.
  • Do not attempt to confront the other patron, let the GUPD talk to the patron when they arrive.
  • If a dangerous patron leaves the area, try to follow at a safe distance so that you can tell GUPD where the patron is located within the building. Do not follow the patron outside the building. You may watch from the windows to give GUPD an idea about where the patron went.
  • The IS Desk staff will ask you to fill out an Incident Report as soon as possible.
  •  The IS Desk will attempt to gather names and numbers of witnesses to the incident.

Elevator Malfunction

The elevator is a Vintage (1970’s) Otis Lexan. If the elevator malfunctions, please press the Emergency Call button. This button will alert staff about the elevator being stuck. If staff are unable to resolve the issue then they will coordinate with facilities for troubleshooting

Emergency Closings

Dahlgren Memorial Library will make every reasonable effort to keep the building open during posted hours. Should a special situation develop which would, in the opinion of the Library Director, endanger the safety of the patrons or staff, the Director has the authority to close the physical library. The Director also has the authority to close the building due to outages that affect the normal operations of the building (i.e. electrical outages or heating and cooling problems.)


In the event of any closing the library staff, patrons, and the security guard would be notified.

Emergency Survival Backpack- Contents and Locations

An emergency survival backpacks are at the IS Desk and will be used if necessary

The emergency kit contains:

(1) Food Bar (2400 calorie)
(3) Water Pouches (4.225 oz.)
(1) Bottle of Water Purification Tablets (up to 25 qts.)
(1) Bio-Hazard Bag
(2) 10″ Nitrile Gloves
(1) Dust Mask
(1) Multi-Function Pocket Tool
(1) 5-in-1 Survival Whistle
(1) Emergency Poncho
(1) Survival Blanket
(1) Box of Waterproof Matches
(1) LED Headlamp
(1) BPA-Free Water Bottle (32 oz.)
(1) First-Aid Kit (33 piece)
(1) Hygiene Kit
(1) Backpack

Evacuation Plans

1. Fire - Evacuation of the Building

o When the fire alarm is sounded everyone in the library should begin an immediate orderly exit. The public will be firmly but politely directed to the nearest accessible exit.  Evacuation Maps are posted on each floor. DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS.

o If you see a person unable to descend the stairs, please help them if you can or let the library staff/emergency responders know that they need a will escort to the nearest exit.

o The main evacuation points are
1) the Med-Dent Annex/Parking Lot &   2) the East/West road via the lower level exit doors, the Ground Floor main entrance, and the 1st Floor exit doors heading toward the Helipad.


  • If you evacuate to the Podium, please continue walking until you have reached one of the main evacuation points (the Podium is a roof and therefore not save for evacuation).
  • Patrons should wait to return to the building until “All Clear” is given by OEM/GUPD.


2. Earthquakes

  • Move as little as possible - most injuries during earthquakes occur because of people moving around, falling and suffering sprains, fractures and head injuries.
  • Try to protect your head and torso.
  • Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you are sure it is safe to exit.
  • Seek shelter under desks or tables as soon as the shaking starts.
  • Everyone should evacuate the building after the shaking stops, use stairs rather than an elevator in case of aftershocks, power outages or other damage.
  • If you see a person unable to descend the stairs, please help them if you can or let the library staff/emergency responders know that they need help.
  • Be aware that smoke alarms and sprinkler systems frequently go off in buildings during an earthquake, even if there is no fire.
  • Before you leave any building check to make sure that there is no debris from the building that could fall on you.

2. Tornado Warning- Evacuation to Shelter in Place

o  Signal for moving to shelter area will be the announcement of a tornado warning over Hoya Alert system or sounding of tornado sirens.

  • Proceed to the lower level if possible or to rooms/floors without windows.  DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS!
  •  If you see a person unable to descend the stairs, please help them if you can or let the library staff/emergency responders know that they need help.
  • Wait for the all clear signal is given by GUPD to the library staff
  • After the all clear, staff will assess the library for damage or injuries. Immediate medical attention will be reported to GERMS and damage will be reported to the library director.

Fire Alarm Pull Stations

In case of fire or smoke, pull it down as indicated to activate the building fire alarm system where provided.


*Please see the library floor maps for locations of the fire alarm pull stations.

Fire Extinguisher

All Fire Extinguishers are Badger and type ABC

A = Trash/Wood/Paper

B = Liquids

C = Electrical Equipment


How to use the extinguishers:

  1. Pull ring pin
  2. Start 8 feet back
  3. Aim at the base of fire. Use extinguisher upright.
  4. Squeeze the lever. Sweep from side to side.

Emergency Exits, Extinguishers & Fire Alarm Pull Stations Maps

First Aid Kit (Locations and Contents)

The first aid kit is located at the IS Desk. Please ask a staff member for the kit if needed.


First Aid Kits include:

21-Antiseptic Towelettes

(36) Alcohol

(6) Sting Relief pads

(6)- Antibiotic ointment

(6) Burn cream

(10) Antacid tablets (2 per packet)

(10)  Aspirin Tablets (2 per packet)

(1) Instant Cold Compress

(2) Frist Aid Guides (English/Spanish)

(20) Adhesive Bandages (1 in x 3in)

(60) Adhesive Bandages (3/4 in x 3 in)

(50) Adhesive Bandages (3/8 in x 1-1/2 in)

(10) Butterfly Bandages

(18) Wound Closure Strips

(2) Gauze Rolls (2 in x 4 yd.)

(8) Sterile Gauze Pads (2 in x 2 in)

(4) Sterile Gauze Pads (4 in x 4 in)

(1) Sterile Trauma Pad (5 in x 9 in)

(2) Eye Pads

(30) Cotton tip applicators

(1) Adhesive Tape roll (1 in x 5 yd.)

(1) Triangular Bandage (40 in x 40 in x 56 in)

(5)Finger splints

(4) Examination gloves

(1) Metal Scissors

(1) Plastic tweezers



If you see a leak/flooding, please report it to the IS Desk staff and stay away from any electrical equipment.

The library staff will report the issue to facilities.

Gas, Water Line and Electrical Issues

Clear the immediate area and report the issue to the IS Desk staff. Library staff will report the issue to facilities and will call GUPD if it is an emergency. The Library staff may tell patrons to evacuate the building if necessary.

Hazardous Materials

In the event of a hazardous materials incident (e.g. overturned tank or rail car on tracks,

broken fuel line or fuel spill, factory chemical emission), warning would usually be

received from Hoya Alert.

If an evacuation is necessary:

1) Library staff will have patrons vacate the building

2) Further evacuation plans will be provided by emergency officials.

If hazardous materials are spilled or exposed at the library, library staff will report immediately to the GUPD for instructions. Library staff will have patrons clear the area and keep patrons. Patrons will be informed when they can return to the library

Inclement Weather

During instances of inclement weather, Georgetown University seeks to provide a safe and secure campus for all community members, including emergency employees who provide services during such events.

Notification of changes in the university’s operating status will be sent as alerts by text message and email via HOYAlert. HOYAlert sends messages with guidance in the event of an incident affecting the safety or security of Georgetown University’s Main Campus, Medical Center, School of Continuing Studies and Law Center. All Georgetown faculty, staff and students are automatically enrolled in HOYAlert. If you are not currently receiving HOYAlert notifications or would like to update your information, please visit

Operating Status
During inclement weather the university will operate under one of the following statuses:

  • Open
  • Open with liberal leave and instructional continuity
  • Open with delayed arrival, instructional continuity and liberal leave
  • Closed with instructional continuity; essential services for campus residents
  • Closed with instruction suspended; essential services for campus residents
  • Early departure with instructional continuity; essential services for campus residents

For the most up-to-date information on operating statuses, please call the university operating status line at (202) 687-SNOW (7669) or visit the university operating status webpage.

Instructional Continuity
Instructional continuity is a policy that allows faculty and students to maintain learning activities and academic work during disruptions, such as inclement weather or university closures.

The operating status decision to open or close the university in inclement weather is based on a careful analysis of various factors.  Our priority is always the safety of our library staff, and we encourage everyone to prepare accordingly when forecasts predict inclement weather.

Infestation Emergency

Damaging insects may be introduced into the Library environment in various ways. Pests that can be damaging or a nuisance to library materials and the building include but are not limited to bed bugs, cockroaches, silverfish, booklice, beetles, termites, and rodents. If you  spot something suspicious in the Library, please inform the IS Desk staff.

Medical Emergencies

Minor Injury or Illness:

  • The IS Desk staff will offer items from the first aid kit such as bandages.
  • The IS Desk staff will ask you if you want them to call GERMs.

Major Injury or Illness, such as broken limbs, unconsciousness, heart attacks, seizure, deep cuts:

Inform the IS desk and they will Immediately call GERMs The staff will report to GERMs the severity and nature of problem plus precise location of injured person. They will also fill out an incident report and inform the library director

The IS Desk staff will also do the following:

  • Take care to ensure victim is not in danger of further injury. Do not move the victim
  • Clear area of bystanders.
  • Assist GERMs if needed.

Power Failure Procedures

The IS Desk staff have some flashlights to help patrons exit the library.



If the outage is extensive (2+ hours), the library director may decide to close the library and may only have the security guards on-site. Signs will be posted on the entrance doors to state that library is closed due to power failure and patrons will be informed that they need to vacate the building.


If anyone is trapped in the elevator when the power goes out, please press the emergency call button to alert the GUPD. They will come and extricate you from the elevator

Public Conduct Policy


The staff at DML are committed to providing our patrons with a positive, satisfying experience when they use the Library’s facilities, services, and materials. While in the DML or at Georgetown University, patrons are to conduct themselves at all times in a manner that does not interfere with others. Anyone who disregards this Public Conduct Policy is subject to restrictions of Library privileges and/or removal from Library property. All three libraries at Georgetown University - Lauinger on the main campus, the Law Center Library, and Dahlgren, the Graduate Health and Life Sciences Research Library at GUMC - have similar policies in place.

Conduct guidelines include but are not limited to the following:

  • Behaving in a way that disrupts or interferes with the normal operation of the Library or disturbs Library users or staff is not allowed. This includes but is not limited to, rowdiness, running, throwing objects, cursing, using threatening language, or other inappropriate behaviors.
  • Harassing Library staff or users, including verbal or physical harassment or abuse is not permitted.
  •  Obeying requests of Library staff members or security guards is expected.
  • Noise level should be maintained at a level that is neither disturbing to other patrons nor disruptive to Library service.
  • Defacing or damaging Library property or committing any other act of vandalism is strictly prohibited.
  • Disturbing others with strong odors to the extent that the use of Library facilities, collections, or services is disrupted is not allowed.
  • Patrons must be fully clothed, including shoes and shirts, in the Library.
  • Personal items are not to be left unattended. The Library is not responsible for items left unattended, and may report suspicious items to GUPD.
  • Alcohol and smoking (including e-cigarettes) are prohibited.
  • Use of bikes, scooters, skateboards, roller blades, and other sporting equipment is not allowed in the Library.
  • Any type of weapon, explosive, or destructive material is banned from Library property.
  • Violating UIS information security ( and DML electronic use policies














Individuals who fail to abide by the Public Conduct Policy may be asked to leave the premises. DML staff are trained to call the GUPD for assistance with any conduct violation that is escalating to ensure the safety of Library patrons and staff. Library staff under the direction of the library director is authorized to ban individuals who repeatedly or egregiously violate the Public Conduct Policy

Door Alarm System (Exit Doors)

If an alarm goes off on one of the outside exit doors in the library, please inform the IS Desk staff. Please provide the location of the alarm and they will turn it off immediately.


If the gate alarm goes off when you exit the library, please return to the Information Services desk so we can ensure that physical materials were checked out properly.  The library staff reserve the right to examine the bags of individuals if the security gates sound an alarm.

Sexual Misconduct

Definition: Acts such as exposure, sexual solicitation, “peeping,” and masturbation. In the event a patron or staff member witnesses and reports any deviant behavior, the following steps should be taken immediately by library staff:


1. Call the GUPD.

2. Determine whether the perpetrator is still present in or near the Library. If so, the victim should be asked to identify the individual to the staff member. If the perpetrator is in the process of leaving the Library, library staff will try to get their ID or ask other patrons if they know the perpetrator. If the individual remains in the Library, assign a staff member to track the individual’s movements until the GUPD arrive. Staff members must always work in pairs during any situation.

3. Take the victim into a private area and attempt to calm them while waiting for the Police. Always have another staff member with you. Do not take anyone anywhere by yourself. Fill out the incident report and inform the library director

4.  The Library will report all incidents to the GUPD even if the victim does not file a complaint

Sprinkler System Malfunction

If the sprinkler system goes off and a known malfunction or vandalism has occurred, please report to the IS Desk staff and they will report it to facilities. Library staff will have patrons vacate the area and remove materials from the area. Please do not touch electrical equipment.

Theft and Vandalism

Library Materials


If staff have reason to believe that an individual may be attempting to take/vandalize library materials/property, call GUPD, library director and will fill out an incident report.


Personal Belongings

If your items are vandalized or stolen while in the Library, please inform the IS Desk staff and they will call GUPD and fill out an incident report.  Please do not leave your personal belongings unattended.

Weapon in the Library: Active Shooter/Violent Intruder

For Active Shooter situations: Form a barricade within the study room and lay down on the ground out of sight (only practically feasible on the Lower Level study rooms behind the opaque sliding doors). For everyone else, exit through the main emergency exits as fast as possible. The rooms on the 1st Floor are simply not designed/equipped to deter a determined shooter, so Fight or Flee are the best practices in this situation.


If there is a shooter in the Library you should try to:


When an active shooter is in the building:

  • If there is an escape path, attempt to evacuate.
  • Evacuate whether others agree to or not.
  • Leave your belongings behind.
  • Help others escape if possible.
  • Prevent others from entering the area.
  • Call GUPD when you are safe.
  • Do not pull the fire alarm


Evacuate to the East/West road via the LL exit doors, the Ground Floor main entrance, and the 1st Floor exit doors heading toward the Helipad. From that point, we will follow the directions of the GUPD.


If evacuation is not possible, find a secure place to hide:

  • Lock and/or blockade the door.
  • Silence your cell phone.
  • Hide behind large objects.
  • Remain very quiet.
  • Do not pull the fire alarm


Hide wherever you can and bring other patrons with you as you can. Turn off the lights, hide away from the door. Keep the door shut/locked.

Don’t open the door until a GUPD office tells you to and confirm they are GUPD  before opening. If you are already in a locked room and hear shots, stay there. When the GUPD have secured the building and you are told to leave, you should follow the directions of the GUPD about where you are instructed to go.


I your life is in danger:

  • Attempt to incapacitate the shooter.
  • Act with physical aggression.
  • Improvise weapons.
  • Commit to your actions.
  • Do not pull the fire alarm


This is not preferred. Staff and patron safety is our number one priority.

 When GUPD Arrives:

  • Remain calm and follow instructions.
  • Keep your hands visible at all times.
  • Avoid pointing or yelling.
  • Know that help for the injured is on its way.


Confirm that the individual is actually a GUPD representative. Do whatever the GUPD tell you to do.


Remember the shooter can be:

A stranger

A library patron

An employee or ex-employee

The significant other or ex-significant other of a staff member or patron

Locations where you can lock the door and hide:

Staff area


* If a person displays a firearm/weapon in the building, it should be treated as an active shooter situation.

Follow the plan above.


1. Turn off lights

2. No one may enter and no one may exit.

3. Move away from the main entrance area to a more protected area away from windows

4. Wait for instructions from emergency personnel.