UW Emergency Management

UW Emergency Management (UWEM) is a department in UW Facilities. 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.

Are you ready for the next big earthquake?

Learn about the earthquake risks in the Pacific Northwest and how to become better prepared.



  • Off the Richter Scale ... Can the Pacific Northwest prepare for the cataclysmic quake that’s coming?

    March 15, 2019

    Americans have long dreaded the “Big One,” a magnitude 8.0 earthquake along California’s San Andreas Fault that could one day kill thousands of people and cause billions of dollars in damage. The Big One, though, is a mere mini-me compared with the cataclysm forming beneath the Pacific Northwest.

    This fascinating, and yes, quite scary article from the Winter 2019 City Journal, provides even more sobering facts and statistics detailing how bad it's really going to be after our mega-quake.  Tick... tick.. tick...


  • How UW-Tacoma Tackles Winter Weather

    February 20, 2019

    tacoma snowKudos to our partners on the Tacoma Campus in their recent battle with Ole' Man Winter earlier this month!  Like their colleagues at the Bothell and Seattle campuses (and dozens of other satellite locations throughout Western Washington), the work done behind-the-scenes by university staff is both complex and a bit magical.  If you ever wanted to get a glimpse of the WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHEN and WHY the Tacoma campus "suspends operations", allows for "early release" or "delays opening", click here to find out.  With public safety always the primary objective, and with a number of other factors to consider, it is useful for our community to understand the factors that go into these decisions.


  • Record-Setting Lowland Snowstorm and Ice Trigger Closures (February 4-13, 2019)

    February 5, 2019

    Seattle Snow Feb 2019Though forecasts for Seattle predicted a trace to 1" of snow, UW students, faculty and staff woke February 4 to 2"- 4" of snow in Seattle (and up to 10 inches in the cities to the North and East). All three UW campuses suspended operations after an assessment of transportation conditions. The snowfall, coupled with strong winds and all-day below freezing temperatures and resulting icy roads snarled regional transportation systems and made travel throughout the region dangerous and difficult. Despite wide-spread traffic incidents, damage was limited and no direct fatalities were reported as a result of this lingering storm.

    A constant series of followup storms, roughly every 2-3 days, brought additional snow to all of Western Washington.  By February 14th, the UW Seattle campus experienced a record seven days of either late start, early release or full-suspension of operations.  This week long impact to the University was unprecedented and was one for the record books, with this February breaking all records for the snowiest February in Seattle history.


  • Looking for UW Snowstorm Information??

    February 4, 2019

    no classesSo, you just got the text that your UW campus has suspended operations and were wondering ... "What exactly does that mean?!"  Or maybe you were curious about the status of your bus route, if the street outside your office/classroom has been plowed, or how you should prepare for a cold night without heat?  Well, UWEM's Winter Weather Resources webpage is chock-full-o' helpful links, websites and other informative links that will help you survive our rare, but not uncommon, snowy and/or icy winter weather events in the Puget Sound lowlands.


  • The Votes are in -- Scott Nelson is the new 2019-2020 ERC Chair !!

    January 27, 2019

    S_Nelson_061CONGRATULATIONS to Scott D. Nelson, who recently was elected as the 2019-2020 Chair of the UW's Emergency Readiness Committee (ERC)! In this role, Scott will guide the ERC in providing strategic input to the UWEM Department and assisting in improving the UW's overall disaster resilience.  This 2-year term of service represents the highest honor and will allow Scott to represent the ERC to senior UW Leadership, outside organizations and the general campus community.

    Scott is currently the Fire Safety and Engineering Manager with UW's Environmental Health & Safety Department. The voting process for the ERC Chair position was opened on January 11, 2019 and was closed and fully-certified on January 25th.  Scott succeeds outgoing 2018 Chair, Doug Gallucci, who guided the ERC last year in a number of initiatives, including the establishment and approval of the ERC Charter. Thanks to all who participated in the election.

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