Emergency Response and Evacuation

MCC Emergency Phone Numbers

Call 911 for MCC and Crystal Lake Fire Department for a life-threatening emergency.
When calling 911 on an MCC phone, it is not necessary to dial 9 first. MCC Police and the Emergency Dispatch Center are automatically notified of your location when you call 911 from a campus phone.

Call 8733 from an MCC campus phone to reach MCC Police for any non-life-threatening situation. Examples might include:

  • Requesting assistance with a disruptive student (non-violent)
  • Requesting a safety escort to your car
  • Unlocking a classroom door
  • Reporting a crime (not in progress)
  • Reporting a traffic crash (non-injury)
  • Reporting an injury or medical aid (non-life-threatening)

In an emergency or when in doubt, call 911.

Emergency Response/Evacuation

Emergencies, disasters, accidents, and injuries can occur at any time and without warning. Being prepared physically and mentally to handle emergencies is an individual as well as an organizational responsibility.

McHenry County College has established emergency procedures for you to follow so that the effects of those emergencies can be minimized. Your safety is of primary importance.

The purpose of this information is to acquaint you with a plan for handling emergencies and disasters. Once you are familiar with this information, you will be able to protect yourself and perhaps save a life.

The more prepared you are, the better you will respond to an emergency situation. No matter what the crisis: think before you act; then act swiftly to minimize your exposure to danger. Read this guide thoroughly before an emergency occurs.

Employees and students can sign up for mass notifications »

How to Respond

  • Medical Emergency Procedures

    Life Threatening Injury or Illness

    • Do not leave the injured/ill party alone.
    • Designate a specific person to call 911 and relay information to emergency personnel.
    • If trained to do so, begin providing first aid/CPR.
    • Campus Police personnel are trained first responders in first aid/CPR and AED (Automated External Defibrillator).

    Non Life-Threatening Injury or Illness Requiring Assistance

    • Call 8733 and request a Campus Police response.

    Mental Health Emergency and Crisis Assistance Options

    • Call 8733 to notify Campus Police.
    • If a student indicates he/she is considering suicide, call 911 immediately.
  • Fire

    Make sure you know the location of fire, exits, alarms and extinguishers for your area.

    • Call 911 immediately.
    • If a minor fire appears controllable (wastebasket size), call 911, then locate the nearest fire extinguisher and promptly direct the charge of the fire extinguisher toward the base of the fire.
    • If the fire is not controllable, locate the nearest red fire alarm box on a hallway wall and pull down on the white handle to activate the building's alarm system.
    • Immediately evacuate the building and call 911.
    • When you get outside, proceed at least 500 feet away from the building to the farthest area of the parking lots. Keep fire lanes, hydrants and walkways clear for emergency personnel and vehicles.
    • Assist people who are mobility-impaired to exit the building.
    • Do not use the elevators during a fire.
    • Smoke is toxic. If smoke is present, stay close to the floor.
    • If you are last to leave an office or classroom, close the door on your way out.
    • When you get outside, proceed at least 500 feet away from the building to the grassy area on the other side of the parking lots. Keep fire lanes, hydrants and walkways clear for emergency personnel and vehicles.
    • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.
    • Remain calm
  • Tornado/Severe Weather
    • A tornado/severe weather watch is in effect when conditions are right for a serious emergency to develop.
      • Be alert for announcements.
      • Continue classes and office work on a normal basis.
    • A tornado/severe weather warning is in effect when a tornado or severe storm has been sighted in this or an adjacent county and when its approach to the local area is imminent.
      • The public address system will be used to announce a tornado warning and will direct people to move to a safe shelter area.
      • Move immediately to a safe shelter area and cover up to avoid injury from flying debris. Safe area locations are posted in each classroom.
      • Avoid areas with wide-span roofs, such as the gym/multi-purpose room, library, café, commons and atrium.
      • Remain calm and assist others in locating a designated shelter area.
      • Allow anyone with a mobility impairment to have priority access to elevators.
      • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given via the PA system.
      • If you are in a vehicle and a tornado is imminent, get out of your car and move to a permanent building.
  • Earthquake

    Earthquakes generally occur without warning and may cause minor to serious ground shaking, damage to buildings and personal injury.

    • Upon the first indication of an earthquake, direct all persons to drop, cover and hold. Dropping, covering your head (and your body by being under a strong table if possible), and holding onto furniture (even if it is moving) offers the best overall level of protection in most situations.
    • In cases where an earthquake is less violent, you might be able to move to a more advantageous position (e.g. away from breaking windows, overhead hazards, etc.) as you drop, cover and hold.
    • If outdoors, direct individuals to move away from buildings, gas and electrical lines.
    • Be prepared to relocate to a remote site if an off-campus evacuation is ordered.
    • Avoid the gym/multi-purpose room, library, café, commons and atrium.
    • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.
  • Active Shooter/Attacker

    In the event of an active shooter/attacker, your safety is important. Because these situations are fluid, options are important for survival. The College Police recommend run, hide, fight. See safety videos


    If you know the location of the shooter and it's safe to run, you should run away from the gunfire and get to a place of safety and cover. Once safe, call 911.


    If you are unable to run from the shooter/attacker due to the proximity and lockdown is your option, follow the lockdown procedure below. Call 911.


    If you are confronted by an active shooter/attacker and there are no other options, fight. You must be prepared to fight with all your might to fend off an attack. There is power in numbers.

  • Lockdown

    Used when there is a threat of violence or serious incident that could jeopardize the safety of students and employees (e.g. shooting, hostage incident, gang fights).

    When a lockdown has been announced via the public address system or Rave alert:

    • If a life threatening situation exists and it is safe to do so, exit immediately to a place of safety.
    • Call 911.
    • Clear the hallway and bathrooms near your area if possible, by moving everyone into rooms away from windows.
    • Lock the doors, turn off the lights and shut the blinds and windows.
    • Move students and staff away from the doors and windows.
    • Have all persons spread out and sit down against an interior wall.
    • Ignore all bells and alarms unless otherwise instructed.
    • Do not exit the area until the all-clear signal is given, or it is safe.
    • If outside, move students and others to safety and wait for further instructions through announcement or mass notification.


    • Lock the door.
    • Turn out lights
    • Move out of sight.
    • Spread out.
  • Utility Service Disruptions

    Electrical Power Failure:

    • Move to an area of safety using a flashlight or even your cell phone for light.
    • Ensure that others in your area are safe.
    • Wait to be notified by College personnel of any other actions to be taken.
    • Emergency generators will provide temporary lighting.
    • The President's Office will determine if the College will close.
    • If stuck in an elevator, use the call box inside to call for assistance.

    Gas Leak:

    • Do not turn on lights or any type of electrical equipment.
    • Do not activate the fire alarm.
    • Do not light matches or lighters.
    • Evacuate the area immediately.
    • Call 911 to notify Campus Police.
    • If evacuating, follow evacuation procedures while avoiding areas of hazard.
      • Get outside and proceed at least 500 feet away from the building to the area on the other side of the parking lot<
      • Be prepared to evacuate to an off-campus relocation site if directed.
      • Do not allow anyone to reenter the building until the facility has been deemed safe.
      • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.
  • Hazardous Materials
    • Call 911 to report any spill of hazardous materials (chemical/biological).
    • When reporting the incident, be specific about the nature of the material involved and report the exact location. Campus Police will contact the necessary authorities and/or medical personnel.
    • Campus personnel will check their classrooms, offices and work area for suspicious items and report any findings to Campus Police.
    • Immediately evacuate the affected area.
    • Leave classroom doors open when exiting.
    • Be prepared for an off-site evacuation if ordered.
    • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.

    Some examples of hazardous materials:

    • Solids, liquids or gases that can harm people, property or the environment, including:
      • Radioactive, flammable or explosive materials
      • Chemicals containing toxins, pathogens or allergens
      • Blood
      • Vomit/other bodily fluids
  • Shelter-In-Place

    Shelter-in-place is used when evacuation would put people at risk, such as severe weather or hazardous material release outdoors. Shelters may change depending on the emergency. An announcement will be made using the building public address system.

    • Move students and others into designated safe areas such as inside rooms with no windows, bathrooms, utility closets and downstairs hallways without outside windows or doors.
    • Close classroom doors when leaving.
    • Have everyone kneel down and be ready to cover their heads to protect themselves from debris.
    • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.
    • If outside, instructors will direct students into the nearest College building or appropriate shelter.
    • For severe weather, if there is no time to get into a building or shelter, attempt to squat or lie low in the nearest ditch or low spot away from trees and power poles.
  • Bomb Threat

    If you observe a suspicious object or potential bomb in a campus building or on the grounds, do the following:

    • Do not touch the object.
    • Do not turn anything on or off.
    • Evacuate the area immediately.
    • Call 911 to contact Campus Police.
    • Do not use cell phones or two-way radios.
    • Remain calm.

    If you receive a bomb threat, do the following:

    • Look at your phone display to see the Caller ID and record the phone number.
    • Keep caller on the line as long as possible and alert others in the area.
    • Have others call 911 to contact Campus Police.
    • Remain calm.
    • Listen, ask questions and record information on:
      • Where is the bomb?
      • When is the bomb going to explode?
      • What kind of bomb is it?
      • What does it look like?
      • How is it activated?
      • Time of call.
      • Speech patterns, accent, phrases (“commons,” “atrium“ etc.)
      • Emotional state of the caller.
      • Background noises.
  • Explosion or other Similar Incidents

    If an explosion occurs on campus, take the following actions:

    • Take cover immediately under tables, desks and other objects that will provide protection and cover from falling glass or other debris.
    • Call 911 immediately after the effects of the explosion subside. Describe the nature of the emergency and give your name and location. If you are unsure of your location, describe your surroundings.
    • Activate the building fire alarm system, if necessary.
    • Walk quickly to nearest marked exit when you hear the fire alarm or when you are told to evacuate the building by a College official.
    • If smoke is present, stay close to the floor.

    If an emergency exists, the building fire alarm will be activated � evacuate immediately.

    • assist people who are mobility-impaired to exit the building.
    • do not use cell phones or two-way radios.
    • do not use the elevators during an evacuation.
    • Close classroom and office doors as you leave the building.
    • When you get outside, proceed at least 500 feet away from the building to the area on the other side of the parking lots. Keep fire lanes, hydrants and walkways clear for emergency personnel and vehicles.
    • Remain in the designated safe area until the all-clear is given.
  • Behavioral Intervention Team

    See something? Say something!

    • Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT) responds quickly to behavior indicating a potential risk to self or others, including possible circumstances of violence or threatening behavior.
    • BIT identifies resources for student/employees and makes referrals to appropriate campus and off-campus agencies with the intent to provide the appropriate assistance.
    • BIT educates and empowers the campus community to recognize, report and effectively address aberrant, dangerous, threatening and concerning behaviors.

    Contact BIT by filling out this form

    We check form submissions Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., when the college is open. In an emergency, contact Campus Police at 8733 or 911 after hours.

  • Violent or Criminal Behavior

    If you observe a criminal act or a person behaving in a threatening manner on campus, immediately call 911 to report the incident. Campus Police will respond.

    In case of gunfire or discharged explosives occurring on campus, get to a place of safety or take cover immediately. Run, Hide, Fight if necessary and wait for further instructions.

    See Active Shooter/Lockdown

  • Persons with Physical Disabilities

    Mobility-Impaired Persons
    Frequently, mobility-impaired persons have respirator complications. Remove these people from smoke or fumes immediately. The needs and preferences of mobility-impaired persons will vary. Always consult the person as to his/her preference with regard to the following:

    • Ways of being removed from the wheelchair. Wheelchairs should not be used in stairwells if at all possible.
    • The number of people available and necessary for assistance.
    • Whether to extend or move extremities when lifting because of pain, catheter leg bags, spasms, braces, etc.
    • Whether a seat cushion or pad should be brought along if they are removed from the chair.
    • Being carried forward or backward on a flight of stairs.

    Visually Impaired Persons
    Most visually impaired persons will be familiar with the immediate area. In the event of an emergency, tell the person the nature of the emergency and offer to guide him/her to safety (this is the preferred method when acting as a “sighted guide”). As you walk, tell the person where you are and advise him/her of any obstacles. When you have reached safety, orient the person to where he/she is and ask if any further assistance is needed. Do not leave the person alone.

    Note: Visually impaired persons may be extremely reluctant to leave familiar surroundings when the request for evacuation comes from a stranger. A Guide Dog could become confused or disoriented in a disaster. People who are blind or partially sighted may have to depend on others to lead them, as well as their dog, to safety during an emergency.

    Deaf or Hard of Hearing
    Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing may not perceive emergency alarms; therefore, an alternative warning technique is required. Two methods of warning are as follows:

    • Turn the light switch on and off to gain attention. Then through gestures or in writing, indicate what is happening and what to do.
    • Write a note which describes the emergency and the nearest evacuation route (e.g., “Fire—evacuate area. Do not use elevators”).

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