UW Emergency Management

UW Emergency Management

UW Emergency Management (UWEM) is one of seven Facilities Services departments.  We provide technical and custom services to the entire institution, including individual and group training, orientations, consultative sessions, seminars and orientation materials as they relate to major campus crises, disasters and major emergency incidents.  With input from our stakeholders, we facilitate the development and implementation of institution-wide, department and individual protection programs and projects that promote disaster resilience, planning, training, mitigation, response, prevention and recovery for all-hazards.

  • How are we doing: January 2018 BARC Report

    February 21, 2018

    After a year of hurricanes, flooding, and earthquakes that elevated the awareness and concern about natural disasters and returning to business in the minds of the UW community, people have asked us "how are we doing?" We had a sense that there was a lot of room for improvement, but we didn't have the hard numbers. Now we do!

    As of January 2018, we have finished compiling data on the Business, Academic and Research Continuity program to help us better identify how we're doing, prioritize our continuity planning, and help leadership better understand how the University is doing enterprise-wide. We will dive into the overall numbers in different ways each month as we work toward helping every single department at the UW Seattle, UW Tacoma, UW Bothell, and UW Medicine to create continuity of operations plans.


    Data below was compiled on February 8, 2018 and reflects the status of the program at the end of  January. What do we see? That there is a lot of room to improve! Let's start by looking at the hard numbers.

    First, a note on departments

    We have identified 702 needed plans. This number may shift as we work through the process. It may grow as departments recognize the need for more individualized plans--for example, the power plant at the University is in a facilities services department, but has specialized needs that justify it having its own plan. Other teams may find that the overall responsibilities they are trying to maintain do not require as individualized a plan as their organization chart might indicate.

    Our current status

    The chart below represents the U-wide status of department continuity of operations planning. For a department to complete a plan they must 1) start a plan, 2) update that plan annually, and 3) exercise that plan every other year with UWEM. The first version of the plan is also reviewed by UWEM and comments provided. Departments can request this review at any time.

    In future months we will dive into other data, and tracking improvement, but this is our baseline. At this time, 21% of departments have a plan. These plans may not be complete, and in fact only 32% of the plans that have been started have been updated in the past year, but the department has started the process, and that's a good sign that awareness to this need is growing. This is the kind of work that can only come from individual departments/units because the people doing the work every day know what kind of work has to be prioritized after a major disruption.

    21% of departments have continuity plans


    We will be working with departments to get plans written and exercised. But it also depends on interest and awareness in departments. Ask your team about continuity of operations planning. When a new staff member joins your team, updating your continuity plan should be an obvious next step. This is all part of developing a culture of continuity at the University. While the severity and consequences of an emergency cannot be predicted, effective contingency planning can minimize the impact on the University of Washington missions, personnel, and facilities.

    Do you want to know more about how your team is doing? Contact our BARC manager, Megan Levy, a levym2@uw.edu

  • Earthquake Awareness and Personal Preparedness Seminars

    February 12, 2018

    As you may have already noted from this Whole U Staff Story, one UWEM staff member is bringing the long-standing Earthquake Awareness and Personal Preparedness seminar to the campus at large.

    These seminars are available to all UW Faculty, Staff and Students, and will be offered around the Seattle campus on a monthly basis February - September 2018.

    Topics discussed include:

    1. An overview of UW Emergency Management, and the services we offer
    2. The earthquake risk specific to Puget Sound
    3. Personal Preparedness basics
    4. Earthquake "response" at the University of Washington
    5. Resources for more information/help


    The schedule is currently is as follows (but subject to change). Keep an eye out for registration via Whole U events!

    • February 15th: UW Tower, 1-2pm
    • March 15th: HUB 250, 2-3pm
    • April: Alder Hall Auditorium, date and time TBD
    • May 18th, Facilities Services Training Center: Noon-1pm
    • June 19th, Kane Hall Rm 110: 6-7pm
    • July: Health Sciences, date and time TBD
    • August 15th, Allen Auditorium: 1-2pm
    • September 14th, UW Tower: 10-11am


  • Happy Anniversary Cascadia Earthquake

    January 26, 2018

    cascadiaExactly 318 years ago today, the largest earthquake to ever hit the Pacific Northwest (in recorded history) happened and transformed the landscape forever.  On January 26, 1700, at about 9:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time a gigantic earthquake occurs 60 to 70 miles off the Pacific Northwest coast. The quake violently shakes the ground for three to five minutes and is felt along the coastal interior of the Pacific Northwest including all counties in present-day Western Washington. A tsunami forms, reaching about 33 feet high along the Washington coast, travels across the Pacific Ocean and hits the east coast of Japan. Japanese sources document this earthquake, which is the earliest documented historical event in Western Washington. Other evidence includes drowned groves of red cedars and Sitka spruces in the Pacific Northwest. Indian legends corroborate the cataclysmic occurrence. (source: Historylink.org and Greg Lang)

  • UWEM now offering monthly EOC tours!

    January 22, 2018

    Have you ever wondered what the UW Emergency Operations Center (EOC) looks like, how it operates, or how it came to exist in the first place? UW Emergency Management is proud to announce that all of this information and UW Emergency Operations Centermore will be presented on the second Friday of every month, between 10 and 11am at the UW Tower, C-140.

    That's right, UWEM is now offering EOC Tours on a monthly basis! These tours are open to any UW Student, Faculty, or Staff member, as the UW Tower is a secured building complex and you will need your Huksy Card to gain access.

    While registration is not required, we humbly request that you let us know if you plan on stopping by sending an email to disaster@uw.edu

    See you soon!

  • Trouble using Google products with your NetID?

    January 18, 2018

    UW Emergency Management will sometimes utilize Google products to serve our community. This includes: Google Forms, Google Sites, Google Docs and Sheets, etc. Whether or not you are familiar with using Google products of any kind, it should be easy for anyone with a NetID to access whatever product we are asking you to use.

    If you are having trouble accessing the google product that we have sent you-
    1. Close out of your browser and/or open a brand new window
    2. Type in the web address bar: www.google.com
    3. If you are already signed into a Google account, there will be a circle at the top right with either a letter or your profile picture for that account. Click on that circle, and then click "Sign Out" on the bottom right.
    4. If you are not signed into any account (or you completed step 3), there will be a blue rectangle that reads "Sign in" in the top right corner. Click the rectangle.
    5. A small window will pop up asking you to sign in. Enter your full UW email address onto the "Email or phone" line (NetID@uw.edu) and click Next.
    6. You will be redirected to a University of Washington page asking you to enter your UW NetID and corresponding password. (This should look familiar)
    7. This brings you back to the original Google search page; you are now logged into Google with your UW NetID.

    This should resolve your problem. Please go back to the product you were having trouble with, and try again! Do this by clicking the original link, do not use the back button or simply switch tabs or windows.  

    We hope that helps! If you are still having trouble, please send us a note at disaster@uw.edu.

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