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Policy Title: Emergency Notification

Boise State University Policy #12110
Effective Date: September 2014

To establish the University’s responsibilities and procedures for issuing emergency notifications for emergency incidents and/or dangerous situations.

Additional Authority:
20 U.S.C. § 1092(f); 34 CFR 668.46(e)
University Policy 12070 (Timely Warning)

Applies to all faculty, staff, and students.

Responsible Party:
Campus Security and Police Services, 426-6911

BroncoAlert –The automated system used to send Emergency Notifications in event of an emergency or critical incident at Boise State University.

Emergency Notification – Communication triggered when there is confirmation of a dangerous situation or emergency with immediate impact to life or property at Boise State University.

Timely Warning – Communication triggered when a crime is reported and the University determines there is a continuing threat to faculty, staff, students, or visitors. Crime reports do not always require immediate notice (an Emergency Notification), but are released once the pertinent information is available (See Policy 12070, Timely Warning).


  • I. Policy Statement
  • The following policy provides operational guidelines for issuing emergency notifications to maintain the safety and security of students, faculty, staff, and visitors along with protection of critical infrastructure and key resources. The university will, without delay, and taking into account the safety of the community, determine the content of the notification and initiate the notification system, unless issuing a notification will, in the professional judgment of responsible authorities, compromise efforts to assist a victim or to contain, respond to, or otherwise mitigate the emergency.
  • II. Emergency Notification Procedures
    • A. Circumstances requiring the University to issue an Emergency Notification
      • 1. The University will issue an Emergency Notification upon the confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation involving an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees occurring on campus. (If a threat is not immediate, and involves a crime, the University may follow its Timely Warning procedures, in Policy 12070.)
      • 2. The only reason the university would not immediately issue an Emergency Notification for a confirmed emergency is if doing so would compromise the efforts to assist a victim, contain the emergency, respond to the emergency, or otherwise mitigate the emergency.
      • 3. Confirmation that there is a significant emergency or dangerous situation is achieved when subject matter experts working for credible sources confirm an emergency with one of the individuals listed in section B.1. below. Subject matter experts include but are not limited to local law enforcement, Emergency Management, and the National Weather Service.
      • 4. The following list of situations, or similar circumstances, could require an Emergency Notification:
        • a) A potential life-threatening situation on the campus (armed shooter or bomb threat)
        • b) A building emergency
        • c) Extreme weather conditions (official weather warnings)
        • d) Unplanned University closures (for weather, power outages, etc.)
    • B. Who determines if a situation requires an Emergency Notification
    • One of the following individuals or their representatives will assess a situation and determine if a circumstance warrants an Emergency Notification:
      • 1. Executive Director of Campus Security and Police Services;
      • 2. Senior Boise Police Department Officer on Duty assigned to Boise State;
      • 3. The Incident Commander;
      • 4. Manager of Emergency Preparedness and Continuity Planning; or
      • 5. Campus Security and Police Services Dispatch.
    • C. Who authorizes the issuance of an Emergency Notification
      • 1. One of the individuals listed in section II.B.1. above will confirm an emergency or dangerous situation with personnel on the scene and then authorize the notification.
      • 2. If time allows, the authorizer from section B should consult with the university president or a vice-president before authorizing an Emergency Notification.
    • D. Who creates the Emergency Notification message
    • Campus Security and Police Services will create the Emergency Notification for distribution.
    • E. Content of the Emergency Notification message
      • 1. Campus Security and Police Services will determine the content of the Emergency Notification by assessing the situation and choosing an appropriate pre-approved sample message for the Emergency Notification.
      • 2. Some of the following factors could influence the content of the final message: armed suspects, bomb threat, fire, Hazmat incidence, shooting, street closure, or weather related closure of the University.
      • 3. Names of victims, if any, will be treated as confidential and withheld.
    • F. Who sends an Emergency Notification/ Method of Distribution
      • 1. Campus Security and Police Services Dispatch will send Emergency Notifications through BroncoAlert or other communication vehicles. Please read the Emergency Operations Plan for the latest communication procedures.
      • 2. In the case where Campus Security and Police Services Dispatch is unavailable to issue a BroncoAlert, additional Campus Security and Police Services personnel who have been trained can issue the alert.
      • 3. The Office of Communications and Marketing may send information about the notification via official means to the general public and the media.
    • G. Who receives the Emergency Notification
    • Campus Security and Police Services will determine the appropriate segment or segments of the campus community to receive a notification based on which segments of the University population need information about the Emergency. Generally, the University will send its entire community an Emergency Notification. If sending the Notification to some members of the campus community and not others becomes necessary then some, but not all of these factors will be considered: type of Emergency, location of Emergency, or the possibility the Emergency will become more dangerous.
    • H. Emergency Status Updates and “All Clear” notifications
      • 1. Emergency notification status updates will be made when new information or instructions are available.
      • 2. An “All Clear” notification indicates the emergency situation has been contained. All Clear notifications must be approved by the current Incident Commander on-scene at the incident.
    • I. Additional details for Emergency Notification are outlined in Annex G of the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP).