Coker UniversityOffices & ServicesCampus SafetyAlertsEmergency Instructions
Emergency Instructions

Emergency Instructions


  • Coker University Campus Safety: 843-383-8140
    • Available for 24/7 non-emergency escorts
  • Hartsville Police Department: 843-383-3011; Emergency: 911
  • Hartsville Fire Department: 843-383-3000; Emergency: 911
  • Darlington County EMS: 843-398-4441; Emergency: 911
  • Palmetto Poison Control: 1-800-222-1222; Emergency: 911

An emergency is any situation – actual or imminent – that endangers the safety and lives of Coker University students/employees/visitors, or the security of the Coker campus and property.

This guide is designed as a quick reference to help you respond immediately and effectively to a wide range of emergency situations. More detailed information is available in the college's Emergency Operations Plan.

  • During emergency conditions avoid making telephone calls (including cell phone calls) except for calls of an emergency nature.
  • If you evacuate your building, notify Coker Campus Safety (8140), including notification of your location.
  • If you have a disability that would require special accommodation in an emergency, please notify your manager, instructor, RA, Human Resources or Campus Safety ahead of time. All information will be kept confidential.
  • Program Coker University Campus Safety’s telephone number into your cell phone: 843-383-8140
  • Time is critical in responding to any emergency – and safety of people always comes first, before protection of property.

If you hear an evacuation alarm or are verbally told to evacuate the building:

  • Remain calm
  • Leave quickly
  • Listen to and follow all instructions
  • As you exit, quickly check nearby restrooms, copier rooms, storage rooms, and other areas for occupants who may not have heard the evacuation signal.
  • Notify Campus Safety or emergency officials of anyone needing assistance.
  • Take with you ONLY essential personal items. Do not attempt to take large or heavy objects.
  • Shut all doors behind you as you go.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Once outside do not block exits or emergency vehicle access. Move at least 500 feet away from the building or to a specific location as directed by Campus Safety or other emergency personnel.
  • Stay together as a group.
  • Do not attempt to re-enter the building or area until advised by officials that it is safe to do so.

To report a fire, or if you see or smell significant smoke:

  • Pull the fire alarm pull station closest to the problem.
  • Call 911 (from campus phone: 9-911)
  • Call Campus Safety: 843-383-8140

After reporting a fire, or if the alarm sounds:

  • Remain calm
  • Leave quickly
  • Close doors as you leave the room/area.
  • Immediately leave the building by the closest exit or as directed.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Notify Campus Safety or emergency officials of anyone needing assistance.
  • Once outside do not block exits or emergency vehicle access. Move at least 500 feet away from the building or to a specific location as directed by Campus Safety or other emergency personnel.
  • Stay together as a group.
  • Do not attempt to re-enter the building or area until advised by officials that it is safe to do so.

Note: Do not attempt to extinguish a fire unless you have 1) reported it and 2) can do so safely without putting yourself or those around you in greater danger.

To use a fire extinguisher, use the PASS system:

  • Pull the pin
  • Aim the extinguisher at the base of the fire or side closest to you
  • Squeeze the handle
  • Sweeping motion across the fire


  • Stay inside and be alert for falling objects.
  • If you are in a building with a designated tornado shelter, proceed immediately to that area.
  • In other buildings seek the lowest level or central hallway of the building, away from windows.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Stay away from windows, mirrors, glass and unsecured objects such as filing cabinets or bookcases.
  • Notify Campus Safety or emergency officials of anyone needing assistance.
  • Remain in the safe area until the tornado warning has expired. A CobrAlert will be sent designating that it is safe to leave shelter.
  • Call 911 (from campus phone: 9-911)
  • Call Campus Safety: 843-383-8140
  • Provide as much information as possible about the ill or injured patient and the location of the emergency to the above responders.
  • Have someone remain with the ill or injured person while calls for assistance are being made and until emergency personnel arrive
  • Unless trained, do not attempt to render any first aid before trained assistance arrives.
  • Do not move the person who is ill or has been injured unless they are in imminent danger
  • Limit your communication with the ill or injured person to quiet reassurances
  • Keep the area clear and have someone watch for emergency responders to help direct them to the patient

Refer to the Materials Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), kept in a notebook in each lab

  • Any spill resulting in personal exposure should be treated immediately according to the medication information in the MSDS:
    • Eye: Assist the person to the sink/eyewash station and flush eyes thoroughly with water for a minimum of 15 minutes.
    • Inhalation: Assist moving the person to fresh air.
    • Skin: Removed soaked clothing and flush thoroughly with water.
  • Call Campus Safety: 843-383-8140
  • In case of minor or moderate exposure refer or transport the victim to Health Services.
  • In case of severe exposure call 911 (from campus phone: 9-911).
  • If a hazardous level of a volatile substance has been released pull fire alarm to evacuate building

If you become aware of a shooter or hostage situation, or are notified via CobrAlert, do the following immediately:

If you can safely flee the area, do so immediately. If not, Secure immediate area.

  • Lock and barricade doors
  • Turn off lights
  • Close blinds
  • Block windows
  • Turn off radios and computer monitors
  • Keep occupants calm quiet
  • Keep all occupants out of sight and under adequate cover/protection (e.g., under/behind desks, file cabinets)
  • Silence cell phones

Contacting authorities:

  • Call 911 (from campus phone: 9-911)
  • Call Campus Safety: 843-383-8140
  • Be aware that the 911 system will likely be overwhelmed

Stay in area until notified by officials that it is safe to leave

The following is a summary of the procedures that are recommended if you are on campus during an emergency.

Tune radio or TV to an Emergency Alert Station (EAS) for the information:

  • FM
  • 105.5 WDAR
  • 103.3 WJMX
  • Local Cable
  • Channel 13 WBTW-TV Florence
  • Channel 21 WPDE-TV Florence

State and county officials will decide whether we are to evacuate or seek shelter and will instruct College officials as to whether Potassium Iodide pills should be distributed to faculty, staff and students.

If told to seek shelter:

  • You may be asked to go to Linville Dining Hall. Otherwise, go indoors and close all windows and doors.
  • Turn off fans, heating and air conditioning that require outside air. Close any other air intakes.
  • Do not use the telephone unless absolutely necessary.
  • Stay indoors until a local radio or television EAS reports it is safe to go outside.
  • If you must go outside, place a cloth over your nose and mouth.

If instructed to evacuate:

  • Prepare to go to the assigned primary shelter for our area which is the Florence Convention Center or to anyplace more than 10 miles from the Robinson Plant.

If possible take with you:

  • The Progress Energy Safety Brochure if available
  • Two sets of clothing, two blankets or a sleeping bag, toiletries, bath towels, identification, car registration, credit cards, checkbook, cash, portable radio, flashlight, batteries.

When traveling:

  • Close car windows & vents. Do not run air conditioner or heater.
  • Follow published evacuation routes or instructions from law enforcement officers.
  • As you drive, stay tuned to a local radio station for more information.

If you go to the assigned shelter:

  • You will be registered, can locate relatives, and can be checked for radiation if necessary.
  • You will be assigned a safe place to stay.
  • If you go somewhere other than the shelter, it may be difficult to locate friends and relatives or to let them know where you are.

EAS will inform you when it is safe to return home. Communication from the College will be sent via the CobrAlert and other venues.

Potassium Iodide Pills: Coker University has been supplied with Potassium Iodide (KI) pills. KI pills are designed to be absorbed by the thyroid gland and would help prevent the absorption of nuclear radiation. Should the College be instructed to distribute KI pills, they will be distributed on the 1st floor of the Student Center to any faculty, staff or student who would like them. Each person must sign a form indicating they had received a KI pill. Persons with Iodide allergies should not take a KI pill.

In the event that a student is discovered to be missing for a period exceeding 24 hours a report should be made to one of the following College officials:

  • Director of Campus Safety
  • Dean of Students
  • Provost/Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs
  • Director of Residence Life

Following receipt of a missing student report, College officials will notify the Hartsville Police Department and Coker University Campus Safety. If the student has designated an emergency contact person, the College will notify that individual. Coker University students can confidentially designate an emergency contact person by completing an Emergency Contact Registration form. By law, the parent/guardian of students who are under 18 and not legally emancipated will be notified in the event that the student has been reported as missing for 24 hours.