Emergency Evacuation of University Buildings


Loyola's emergency building evacuation policy was established to provide information and guidelines to all Loyola community members regarding safe and orderly evacuation of buildings in the event of an emergency.

We are committed to providing a safe environment for Loyola's students, staff, faculty and visitors. Your assistance in the full exercise of this policy could help save your life or someone else's.


This policy was developed by an ad-hoc committee appointed by the president to investigate and recommend safe emergency building evacuation procedures on Loyola's campuses. This committee has drawn upon the experience of other institutions, fire departments, life safety code and other resources in preparing this policy.

Policy Statement

Loyola University requires all persons to leave any facility where an emergency evacuation alarm is activated as promptly as possible via the nearest available exit. If an alarm has not been activated, but it becomes clear that an emergency exists, all persons must leave immediately. Alarm pull stations should be activated upon exit.

No one is expected to endanger themselves in order to effect or assist with evacuation of others, but everyone has a duty to ensure that other occupants are aware of an emergency. Similarly, it is expected that individuals will, to the best of their ability, aid anyone requiring assistance to safely evacuate.

Emergency Evacuation

Loyola has adopted a system of evacuation management that is specifically designed for each building. Each building, floor and office will have coordinators who will systematically scan their areas to ensure everyone has evacuated and report to the next level coordinator. These coordinators' responsibilities are explained in the attached Emergency Building Evacuation Procedures.

Evacuation of Disabled Persons

The emergency evacuation alarm systems in most University facilities include visual and audible signaling devices, which should alert sensory impaired persons to alarm conditions. If, while evacuating, you notice someone not responding to the alarm, please be sure they are aware of the emergency.

DO NOT USE ELEVATORS. Elevators cannot safely be used for emergency egress, and are typically programmed to cease operating when a fire alarm is activated.

Designated Emergency Assistance Locations (D.E.A.L.) have been or will be identified within each Loyola building (typically near emergency egress stairways) which wheelchair users can reach on their own, and where they can await assistance from rescue personnel in a position which does not impede or prevent emergency egress by other occupants.

Disabled persons (e.g., persons with physical, visual, or hearing impairments, etc.) have the primary responsibility for requesting assistance. It is suggested that disabled persons prepare for emergencies ahead of time by learning the locations of exit corridors, exit stairways and D.E.A.L.s, by planning an escape route, and by showing a classmate or instructor how to assist him/her in case of emergency. In addition, disabled persons who cannot speak loudly should carry a whistle or have some other means for attracting the attention of another.

Emergency Evacuation Signs

D.E.A.L sign

By each elevator, a sign should be posted with a floor plan indicating the location of exit stairways and the location of Designated Emergency Assistance Locations (D.E.A.L.) and the wheelchair symbol. Wording: "In an emergency, do not use elevators. Use the stairs or (insert or superimpose the wheelchair symbol) the Designated Emergency Assistance Location (D.E.A.L.)."

The D.E.A.L. should be labeled and marked with the wheelchair symbol. Each D.E.A.L. will be assigned a number like "2A" pictured. This number indicates that this location is a primary DEAL on the second floor. "A" is primary, "B" is secondary. Disabled persons are encouraged to use the primary location if possible, and the secondary only if necessary.

If the pathways to exits and/or the D.E.A.L.s are not obvious, mark the pathways with appropriate signs.

Additional Emergency Evacuation Links: