Salk Institute
Emergency Information

Emergency Preparedness and Response

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Emergency Communication

In the event of a major emergency affecting the campus, check the status of the Institute by using one of the methods below:

  • Call (858) 453-4100 – A recorded message reporting the status of the Institute, advising on campus closure and work schedules will be heard.
  • Consult the Salk website: for status of emergency and information available. Emergency status will be determined according to the following:

Green Green: Normal. No emergency

Yellow Yellow: Caution. An event involving an entire floor or building and affecting many people; may involve large-scale evacuation and include the need for off-campus emergency response resources

red Red: Emergency. Campus-wide emergency, such as a strong earthquake, which overwhelms available resources and personnel, causing widespread damage and injuries

What is an "emergency" or "crisis" situation at Salk?

A crisis is any situation or event that the Salk identifies as having a major impact on the campus community, such as an earthquake/natural disaster, fire, health and safety epidemic, explosion, hostage situation, campus danger, or terrorist incident. The following priorities will direct Salk’s course of emergency management and our course of action:

  1. Save Lives, Get People out of Harm's Way
    Required Actions – Manage area evacuations; fire suppression; hazardous materials release response; medical aid; communications; and utility stabilization.
  2. Protect Institute Property
    Required Actions – Safeguard research and vital Institute records; establish facility security; shelter, food and water.
  3. Restore Operations
    Required Actions – Reoccupy buildings or relocate space; obtain emergency recovery supplies through mutual aid arrangements.
  4. Meet Community Needs
    Required Actions – Assist adjacent campus organizations (UCSD, Sanford Consortium, The Scripps Research Institute, Scripps Hospital, V.A. Medical Center).

Departments' play a key role through the development of department-specific emergency response plans to ensure that all personnel can:

  • Identify and use on-site emergency equipment (fire alarms, extinguishers, etc.)
  • React safely to specific emergencies (earthquakes, hazardous material spills, etc.)
  • Quickly evacuate buildings and move to designated assembly areas outside

In the case of an emergency, activation of the emergency plan will be declared by the President, Executive Vice President or his/her designee whenever there is a threatened or actual condition of disaster or extreme peril which cannot be managed by ordinary campus procedures.

The Plan is activated in the following sequence:

Business hours call back:

If the emergency occurs during normal business hours, all designated emergency management personnel will report to the designated Emergency Operations Center as soon as possible. Concurrently, key members of the various departments will also report to their designated areas as outlined in the department-specific emergency response plans.

After hours callback:

If the event occurs after normal business hours, Emergency Operations Center personnel will be called back to campus or gather remotely depending on the situation. A contact list of key departmental personnel is maintained at the dispatch office and those persons will be notified of next steps. If the event is so large as to unquestionably have a profound impact on the campus, yet it is safe to be on site st Salk, all key Emergency Operations Center personnel and essential departmental personnel will be instructed to return to Salk as soon as possible without waiting for a callback.

Upon arriving, damage assessment surveys of all facilities will be initiated. Essential departmental personnel will focus on utility line ruptures and structural building damage in their assigned areas, as well as possible release of hazardous materials. Immediate assistance will be given to injured persons as necessary. Damage estimates will be communicated to the Emergency Operations Center. Essential departmental personnel may remain in their assigned areas to help facilitate regional recovery efforts or be redirected to other areas of the campus requiring additional response attention.

Security will clear all personnel out of structures as soon as possible. Evacuated personnel should move toward the designated assembly areas. In addition to Nixle alerts via SMS messaging and email, the Salk home page,, will broadcast emergency-related information. Elements of the message may contain any and all of the following components:

  • Level of Emergency (red, yellow, green);
  • Specific information about the type of emergency, nature, and severity of the specific situation;
  • Location of the emergency;
  • Safety measures (including evacuation or building lock downs, etc) instructions or other relevant information for campus community;
  • Any updates, directions, indications on regular business operating procedures as we know it at the time.

If the level of emergency requires the proclamation of a campus state of emergency, Salk officials will state that via the web and/or Institute-wide notification.

External Communications:

All inquiries from the press should be sent to the Communications Office. The Communications Office will manage all of Salk's official comments and requests from media.

Phone: 858-453-4100 x1371
Fax: 858-453-3015

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Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Street: 10010 N Torrey Pines Rd
City: La Jolla, CA 92037
Phone: 858.453.4100
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