The World Trade Center attack forever changed how we deal with emergencies and was a very expensive lesson learned. Having well thought out safety procedures in place before they are ever needed is not only practical but oftentimes required as part of the job. Having such a plan is to ensure that if and when an emergency occurs, everyone knows what to do to avoid panic. After the Titanic and other disasters at sea and in the air, safety plans were developed that took passengers through emergency steps “in the event of an emergency.” Some earthquake prone states begin each gathering with a log in sheet and what to do in the event of an emergency even to the identifying of a gathering point outside for a head count. 

Many custodial contracts require “plans” related to safety, emergencies and other unforeseen events so that the properly trained people know where to go and what to do. These written plans should be customized to the particular building/area in question. Identifying entrances, shelters, stairwells and other areas by name can assist evacuation and rescue efforts. 

These plans should be reviewed/updated at least annually or even more frequently if there are major changes in security, the environment or how the building is utilized. Documented meetings should be held to review steps. Oftentimes it is recommended that mock exercises be carried out to simulate an actual emergency.

With the potential for random shootings, terrorist attacks and other emergencies it is important that a well thought out safety plan be in place before it is ever needed. Please note the preceding is suggestive only since regulations will vary by government entity. It is highly recommended that reader consult with local SME (subject matter experts) on any safety related topic and use the preceding as a starting point. Go to for more information or use a search engine for local and state regulations. Your comments and questions are always welcome. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…


Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678.314.2171 or