Evacuation - Disabled Individuals

Carroll College is committed to protecting those employees, students and guests who are either permanently or temporarily disabled. Those employees requiring special assistance with evacuation or other emergency procedures may complete a Request for Assistance form and forward it to the Director of Human Resources. Once this information is received, the Director of Human Resources will ensure the needs of the employee or student are addressed for safe evacuateion and accountability during any incident, emergency or disaster.

Specific Recommendations

Visually Impaired Persons

  • Tell the person the nature of the emergency and offer your arm for guidance. This is the preferred method when acting as a "sighted guide."
  • As you walk, tell the person where you are and where obstacles are located.
  • When you reach safety, orient the person to the location and ask if further assistance is needed.

Hearing Impaired Persons

The building may be equipped with audible fire alarms which should be activated during a fire. However, hearing impaired individuals may not receive the audible signal. Use an alternative warning system. Several methods can be used, including:       

  • Write a note to tell the person of the situation, the nearest evacuation route, and where to meet outside (Sample script: "FIRE! Get out the rear door on your right.").
  • Turn the light switch on and off to gain their attention, then indicate through gestures or in writing what is happening and what to do. Do not use the light switch technique if you smell natural gas in the area.

Persons Using Crutches, Canes or Walker

In evacuations, these individuals would be treated as if they were injured. Carrying options include a two-person, lock-arm position or having the individual sit on a study chair (generally with arms) which is then lifted and carried.

Person Using Wheelchairs (Non-Ambulatory)

Most non-ambulatory persons will be able to exit safely without assistance if they are on the ground floor. If you are assisting a non-ambulatory person, be aware that some people have minimal ability to move and lifting them may be dangerous to their well-being. Some individuals have very little upper trunk and neck strength. Frequently, non-ambulatory persons have respiratory complications. Remove them from smoke and vapors immediately. Some people who use wheelchairs may have electrical respirators. Give them priority assistance, as their ability to breathe may be seriously in danger.

Note: The needs and preferences of non-ambulatory individuals vary. Always consult with the person ahead of time as to his or her preference regarding:

  • Ways of being moved
  • The number of people necessary for assistance. If carrying a person more than three flights of stairs, a buddy system may be needed.
  • Whether to extend or move extremities when lifting because of pain, braces, etc.
  • Whether a seat cushion or pan should be brought along.
  • Being carried forward or backward on stairs.
  • Aftercare, if removed from the wheelchair.

Remember to check the intended route for obstructions before transporting the individual. When the wheelchair is left behind, remove it from the stairwell and place it in a location so it does not obstruct the egress of others. Reunite the person with their wheelchair as soon as it is safe to do so.

Two disabled person buddies and one alternate will be assigned to assist each employee who has a physical condition that would impede their ability to evacuate their work location.