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Severe Weather

Severe Weather

Hurricane or Flood Preparedness

The official source for severe weather conditions will be the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  Based on information received from NOAA, the Crisis Management Plan will be activated and followed.

  1. Watch:  As directed by the Emergency Operations Plan, in the event of a hurricane threat or flood, the Emergency Management Team will gather and analyze conditions affecting the college and surrounding area.
  2. Closing: The Chancellor, or their designee, will be responsible for declaring college closure and activating the Emergency Operations Plan to begin hurricane protection procedures.

Upon notification and direction, all employees will begin back-up and pack-up procedures for offices and classrooms in preparation for campus evacuation.

The main defense will be to allow personnel appropriate time to secure their homes and, if needed, to evacuate while highways are open and safe for passage.  All personnel not specifically assigned to college duties are to depart the campuses and take preventative measures for the duration of the storm.  College buildings at the campus sites will be closed until after the storm.


Maintain contact with office staff as able or as necessary.

Monitor media on status of event and prepare to return to work as soon as authorized.


Monitor all college communication channels for return to campus instructions.                  

Upon returning to campus, employees should investigate their designated areas for possible damage created by the storm and report to the Physical Plant immediately.

The objectives of hurricane protection are:

  • Take every step possible to ensure the safety of all individuals (students, staff, faculty, and visitors) within the college community: The general procedure will be to force evacuation in time to prevent hazards related to impassible roads.
  • Protection of property:  Every step possible will be taken, excluding risk to human life, to protect all college property.

Hurricane conditions as described by NOAA are as follows:

Hurricane Warning:

A warning that sustained winds 64 kt (74 mph or 119 km/hr) or higher associated with a hurricane are expected in a specified coastal area in 24 hours or less. A hurricane warning can remain in effect when dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves continue, even though winds may be less than hurricane force.

Hurricane Watch:

An announcement for specific coastal areas that hurricane conditions are possible within 36 hours.

Tornado Preparedness

Tornado Warning:  

indicates that a tornado has been sighted and is a definite threat to a given geographical area.

Tornado Watch:      

indicates that conditions are favorable for a possible tornado.

Tornados occur suddenly, typically without warning.  Evacuation is not advisable and preparation time is limited.  The following steps are suggested actions that can be taken for protection against injury during a tornado strike:

Protective posture (duck and cover) will be assumed.

  • Stay inside away from windows.
  • Remain near an inside wall of a room or hall, away from the path of the tornado.
  • Exterior windows will not be opened.  Entry doors should remain closed.
  • Keep calm and do not get excited.
  • Avoid cafeterias, gyms, and any other areas with a large roof.
  • Persons outside or in automobiles should take cover in the nearest building.