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Chapter 13 Handling Emergency Situations PDF Print E-mail
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Tuesday, 21 October 2008 16:14

Chapter 13

Handling Emergency Situations

The safety and security of visitors, staff and offenders are the most important concerns in any correctional facility. Department of Corrections staff are trained and have planned for emergency situations ranging from mediating a fight between two offenders to handling a major disturbance. The following are a list of emergency situations that, while unlikely, you may encounter while volunteering for the institution.

Hostile Offenders

  1. Talk calmly to the offender and avoid being argumentative.
  2. Signal to get a staff member.
  3. If you are alone with the offender, maneuver yourself into the vision or hearing range of a staff member.
  4. Do not attempt to resolve the situation on your own--get assistance from staff.

Offender Fight

  1. Summon staff
  2. Do not put yourself between offenders.
  3. Stay clear of the altercation and do not try to break up fight
  4. Tell them firmly to stop
  5. Await the arrival of staff
  6. Follow Staff directions


  1. Do not intervene
  2. Remain where you are
  3. Find cover
  4. If a telephone is available, contact staff to notify them of your position
  5. Await the arrival of staff


  1. There are fire escape plans posted in all areas of the facility. Locate them and familiarize yourself with the appropriate escape route(s) and emergency phone numbers.
  2. In case of fire:
    1. Remove yourself and others from area following posted escape route
    2. Pull the fire alarm nearest the emergency if one is available
    3. Call the emergency number for reporting a fire at the institution. In other facilities call the Fire Department and notify staff. Be prepared to provide the following:
      1. Name of the caller
      2. Location of the caller
      3. Location of fire/emergency
      4. Type of fire/emergency
    4. Follow staff orders

The emergency number at_______________________is_____________________


The likelihood of being taken hostage is remote. However, if you are taken hostage, follow these guidelines:

  1. DO NOT be heroic. Don't try to attack.
  2. Be cooperative and obey hostage-takers demand. Failure to cooperate increases the potential for violence.
  3. Look for a protected place to dive or roll if either authorities or offenders attempt to assault your area.
  4. Remain calm.
  5. Keep a low profile. Avoid the appearance of observing crimes that rioters commit.
  6. Do not make threats against hostage-takers or give any indication that you would testify against them.
  7. Avoid physical resistance. In the event of sexual attack, offer verbal resistance and passive physical resistance. Do not risk your life.
  8. Try to drink water and eat even if you are not hungry.
  9. Act neutral and be a good listener if your captors want to talk.
  10. Appear friendly. It's harder to hurt someone you like.
  11. Do not attempt to negotiate. Your credibility as a negotiator is nonexistent.
  12. Even though you must appear disinterested while being held hostage, observe all you can.
  13. Do not argue.

Assurance of Success

Remember that the Lord Jesus is the Master Worker. He waters the seed sown. He puts into your minds words that will reach hearts. - 9T 41.

To every worker for God this thought should be a stimulus and an encouragement. In this life our work for God often seems to be almost fruitless. Our efforts to do good may me earnest and persevering, yet we may not be permitted to witness their results. To us the effort may seem to be lost. But the Saviour assures us that our work is noted in heaven, and that the recompense cannot fail. - 6T 305

When God opens the way for the accomplishment of a certain work, and gives assurance of success, the chosen instrumentality must do all in his power to bring about the promised result. In proportion to the enthusiasm and perseverance which the work is carried forward, will be the results given. - PP 263

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