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Executive Summary

Revision Information
Revision #: 1.5
Date: December, 2012
Vice President, Administrative Services


Emergencies can come without warning at any time. Being prepared is the best way to handle unexpected incidents and disasters. The information in this guide is intended to cover most emergencies but is not all-inclusive. Use common sense when instructions are not given. Think before you act, then act swiftly to minimize the exposure to danger. It is important to keep the information in this plan up to date.

LAVC's Emergency Response Plan has been designed to assist the college community in the protection of life and property in the event of an earthquake, fire, explosion, or other emergency requiring a coordinated response to assist the injured, protect property and restore the college to normal operations.

This Emergency Coordinators Manual provides a basic contingency plan for College Administrators and supervisors in the event of campus emergencies. While this guide does not cover every conceivable situation, it does supply the basic guidelines necessary to cope with most campus emergencies.

The College policies and procedures described herein are expected to be followed by all personnel whose responsibilities and authority cover the operational procedures found in this manual. It is also noted that there could be many unpredictable factors and this plan should be taken as a guide. Campus emergency operations will be conducted using the guidelines in this manual. Any exceptions to these emergency preparedness procedures will be conducted by, or with the approval of, College Administrators directing and/or coordinating the emergency operations.

All requests for procedural changes, suggestions, or recommendations will be submitted in writing to the Vice President , Administrative Services.


Emergencies at any location on campus where there is a fire, explosion, spill, chemical releases, and all other emergencies may require employees to evacuate the building or a location. An Emergency Response Plan (ERP) and adequate occupant familiarity with a building will minimize threats to life and property. In addition, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Emergency Response Plan standard found at 29 CFR 1910.38(a) requires that each building have a written Emergency Response Plan (ERP). This plan applies to all emergencies where employees may need to evacuate for personal safety.

This document is intended to communicate the policies and procedures for employees to follow in an emergency situation. This written plan should be made available, upon request, to employees and their designated representatives by the Emergency Coordinator for the building.

Under this plan, employees will be informed of:

  • The plan's purpose
  • Preferred means of reporting fires and other emergencies
  • Emergency escape procedures and route assignments
  • Procedures to be followed by employees who remain to control critical plant operations before they evacuate
  • Procedures to account for all employees after emergency evacuation has been completed
  • Rescue and medical duties for those employees who perform them


The Los Angeles Valley College Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) addresses the entire spectrum of contingencies, ranging from relatively minor incidents to large‑scale disasters such as an earthquake. Some emergencies will be preceded by a buildup or warning period. The buildup or warning period can provide sufficient time to warn the College staff and student body and implement mitigation measures designed to reduce loss of life, property damage, and effects on the environment. Other emergencies occur with little or no advance warning, thus requiring immediate activation of the emergency operations plan and efficient and coordinated mobilization and deployment of resources. All staff and faculty of Los Angeles Valley College must be prepared to promptly and effectively respond to any foreseeable emergency, taking all appropriate immediate response actions to including requesting and providing mutual aid.

The Los Angeles Valley College EOP does not address normal day-to-day emergencies or the well-established and routine procedures used in coping with such emergencies. Instead, the operational concepts reflected in the Los Angeles Valley College EOP focus on potential large-scale disasters which can generate unique situations requiring unusual emergency responses. This Los Angeles Valley College EOP is a preparedness document - designed to be read, understood, and exercised prior to an emergency.

The Los Angeles Valley College EOP is designed to be consistent with California Standardized Emergency Management System (SEMS) and Federal Plan requirements:

  • Supports the Incident Command System utilized by field responders
  • Provides Emergency Operations Center (EOC) staff with procedures, documentation, and user-friendly Checklists to effectively manage and coordinate emergency response
  • Provides detailed information in supplemental requirements such as Public Information and Damage Assessment


The EOP provides recommended response actions guided by the Los Angeles Valley College priorities to:

  • Protect Life and maintain Safety
  • Secure and protect critical College infrastructure and facilities
  • Rapidly resume teaching programs


  • Los Angeles Valley College is primarily responsible for emergency actions and will commit all available resources to save lives, minimize injury to persons, and minimize damage to College property.
  • Los Angeles Valley College will utilize the Incident Command System (ICS) and structure in the College EOC and in field response operations.
  • The Los Angeles Valley College Vice President Administration, serving as the Director of Emergency Services, will manage and coordinate the College’s disaster response processes in conformance with City, County, State, and Federal guidelines.
  • The resources of the College may be made available to American Red Cross, City of Van Nuys, Los Angeles County, special districts, local agencies, and citizens to cope with disasters affecting the community.
  • Mutual aid assistance will be requested when disaster relief requirements exceed the College’s ability to respond.

This Emergency Response Plan Manual is a part of the Los Angeles Valley College Emergency Operations Plan, is an on-going effort and responsibility of the College Sheriff. Due to the dynamic nature of emergency planning, the Los Angeles Valley College Emergency Operations Plan must constantly evolve to keep pace with the changes at Los Angeles Valley College. The Los Angeles Valley College Emergency Operations Plan and the EOC Guidebook will be reviewed every two years by the Emergency Response Action Team.


The State of California Code of Regulations, Title 19, Division 2, contains provisions relevant to emergency response and provides the authority for the Los Angeles Valley College Emergency Operations Plan. The Emergency Operations Plan identifies situations in which the Los Angeles Valley College EOC may or should be activated. This authority is established by both state statutes and the Los Angeles Valley College's emergency response policy which provides legal empowering authority of the President, Vice President, Administrative Services, Director, College Facilities and Duty Manager/Dean for EOC activation and emergency response.

Automatic EOC activation should normally occur when:

  • The safety and/or security of students, faculty, or staff of the College is in peril
  • Significant College facilities are in peril
  • Los Angeles County and/or the City of Los Angeles activates their EOC and requests significant mutual aid resource support (such as establishing an Care and Shelter Facility) from the Los Angeles Valley College
  • The governor has proclaimed a State of Emergency in an area which includes the College


The Los Angeles Valley College President, Vice President, Administrative Services, Director, College Facilities (DCF) or Duty Manager/Dean upon declaring an emergency, may (by State law) assign any College employee “Disaster Service Worker” responsibilities in order to respond to an emergency situation. The College may use whatever resources are at hand during a declared emergency. Key response departments are encouraged to recruit and train permanent volunteers to supplement and support emergency functions. The Maintenance & Operations (M&O) or the College Sheriff will secure evacuated areas when feasible. Appropriate precautions will be taken to protect personnel from potential hazards during any lock down.


The EOP provides recommended response actions guided by the Los Angeles Valley College priorities to:

  • Protect Life and maintain Safety
  • Secure and protect critical College infrastructure and facilities
  • Rapidly resume teaching programs

Management of the earliest phases of an emergency is the most critical. Emergency response agencies must ensure an early exchange of information and complete initial decision-making prior to activation of the EOC. The Los Angeles Valley College Crisis Action Team includes senior Administrators from the President’s Office, Vice President, Administrative Services, College Sheriff’s Department, and Plant Director, College Facilities (DCF) who will confer by telephone or meet to make recommendations to the President on immediate actions and possible EOC activation. They will then take this plan to the EOC for presentation to those in the process of setting for activation.

In an emergency, government (including Los Angeles Valley College) response is an expansion of responsibility and action coupled with normal day‑to‑day activity. Normal duties will be maintained with emergency operations carried out by those agencies assigned specific emergency functions. In accordance with the laws of the State of California the Standardized Emergency Management System (SEMS), which uses the same structure as an Incident Command System (ICS), has been adopted by Los Angeles County, the City of Van Nuys and Los Angeles Valley College for EOC management response to multi-agency and multi-jurisdiction emergencies and to facilitate communications and coordination between jurisdictional EOCs.

The basic SEMS organization structure of Management, Operations, and Planning, Logistics, and Finance functions will be used within the EOC to facilitate coordination with other jurisdictions and agencies, and field Incident Commanders and their staffs. The EOC organization may include representatives from special districts, volunteer agencies, and private agencies with significant response roles.

Management Section

Responsible for overall emergency policy and response management through the joint efforts of government agencies and private organizations; the Vice President Administration serving as the Director of Emergency Services will either activate appropriate EOC sections or ensure action is taken as needed.

Operations Section

Responsible for coordinating all field operations (at a strategic level) in support of the emergency response through implementation of the College's EOC Action Plan.

Planning Section

Responsible for collecting, evaluating, and disseminating information; developing the College EOC long term Action Plan in coordination with other EOC Sections, and maintains documentation.

Logistics Section

Responsible for providing facilities, services, personnel, equipment, supplies, and materials for both the EOC and field responders.

Finance Section;

Responsible for financial activities and other administrative aspects.

The Standardized Emergency Management System/Incident Command System is flexible and structured so that:

  • The system's organizational structure adapts to any emergency or incident to which emergency response agencies would expect to respond
  • The system will be applicable and acceptable to all user agencies
  • The system is readily adaptable to new technology
  • The system expands in a rapid and logical manner from an initial response to a major incident and contracts just as rapidly as organizational needs or the situation decrease
  • The system has basic common components in organization, terminology and procedures

The Standardized Emergency Management System/Incident Command System provides the following kind of operations:

  • Single jurisdictional/agency involvement
  • Single jurisdictional responsibility with multiple agency involvement
  • Multiple jurisdictional responsibility with multiple agency involvement

The components of SEMS/ICS are designed to provide for:

  • Common terminology
  • Modular organization
  • Unified Command structure
  • Consolidated action plans
  • Manageable span-of-control
  • Multi-agency or Inter-agency Coordination
  • Multi-agency or inter-agency coordination Group

Common Terminology

Common terminology is the established common titles for organizational functions, resources, and facilities within SEMS/ICS.

Modular Organization

Modular organization is the method by which the SEMS/ICS organizational structure, based upon the type and size of an incident, develops. The SEMS/ICS organization staff builds from the top down as the incident grows, with responsibility and performance placed with the Incident Commander.

SEMS/ICS is made up of five functions: Management; Operations; Planning; Logistics; and Finance. These functions may, as the incident grows, be organized and staffed into Sections. Initially, the Director of Emergency Services may be performing all five functions. Then, as the incident grows, each function may be established as a Section with several Units under each Section. Only those functional elements that are required to meet current objectives will be activated. Those functions which are needed but not staffed will be the responsibility of the next higher element in the organization.

Command Structures and Plans

Unified Command structure is a unified team effort which allows all agencies with responsibility for the incident, either geographical or functional, to manage an incident by establishing a common set of incident objectives and strategies. This is accomplished without losing or abdicating agency authority, autonomy, responsibility or accountability.

Consolidated Action Plans identify objectives and strategy determinations made by the Director of Emergency Services for the incident based upon the requirements of the affected jurisdiction. In the case of Unified Command, the incident objectives must adequately reflect the policy and needs of all the jurisdictional agencies. The consolidated Action Plan documents the tactical and support activities that will be implemented during an operational period.

Manageable span‑of‑control within SEMS/ICS is a limitation on the number of emergency response personnel who can effectively be supervised or directed by an individual supervisor. The position title Section "Chief" refers to the lead person of each organizational element in the EOC. The type of incident, the nature of the response or task, distance, and safety will influence the span‑of‑control range. Each activated function will have a person in charge of it, but a supervisor may be in charge of more than one functional element. Every individual will have a supervisor and each supervisor should be responsible for no more than seven employees, with the ideal span-of-control being three to five persons.

Multi-agency or inter-agency coordination is important for:

  • Establishing priorities for response
  • Allocating critical resources
  • Developing strategies for handling multi-agency response problems
  • Sharing information
  • Facilitating communications

  • May be established formally
  • Should develop consensus on priorities, resource allocation and response strategies
  • May function within the EOC, at another location or through conference calls but should remain in contact with the EOC
  • EOC Action Plan should incorporate group priorities and objectives
  • Group objectives should be implemented through the EOC
  • Los Angeles Valley College may participate with other local governments and agencies in a multi-agency coordination group organized by another local government(s) or at the State Level.

The EOC will be a focal point for coordination of response activities with volunteer and private agencies and businesses. Based on the tactical situation the appropriate Section Chiefs may establish communication with private and volunteer agencies providing services to the College.

Agencies that have county-wide response roles and cannot respond to the College EOC may be represented at the Los Angeles County EOC level. Requests for support should be coordinated through the Los Angeles County EOC.